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  • IPA(key): /snʌb/
  • (file)
  • Rhymes: -ʌb

Etymology 1[edit]

From Middle English snubben (also snibben), from Old Norse snubba (to curse, chide, snub, scold, reprove), which, like the source of English snip, is probably imitative in some manner.[1] Cognate with Danish snibbe, dialectal Swedish snebba.


snub (comparative more snub, superlative most snub)

  1. Conspicuously short.
    a snub-nosed revolver
  2. (of a nose) Flat and broad, with the end slightly turned up.
    • 1914, G[ilbert] K[eith] Chesterton, The Wisdom of Father Brown[1]:
      It was even less easy to fix the impression in the case of the man at the right end of the table, who, to say truth, was as commonplace a person as could be seen anywhere, with a round, brown-haired head and a round snub nose, but also clad in clerical black, of a stricter cut.
    • 1977, Agatha Christie, chapter 2, in An Autobiography, part II, London: Collins, →ISBN:
      If I close my eyes I can see Marie today as I saw her then. Round, rosy face, snub nose, dark hair piled up in a chignon.
  3. (mathematics, of a polyhedron) Derived from a simpler polyhedron by the addition of extra triangular faces.
Derived terms[edit]


snub (plural snubs)

  1. A deliberate affront or slight.
    I hope the people we couldn't invite don't see it as a snub.
    • 1915, Virginia Woolf, The Voyage Out, London: The Hogarth Press, published 1949, →OCLC:
      It was part of Evelyn’s character that in spite of many snubs which she received or imagined, she never gave up the pursuit of people she wanted to know, and in the long run generally succeeded in knowing them and even in making them like her.
    • 2017 January 14, “Thailand's new king rejects the army's proposed constitution”, in The Economist[2]:
      The bluntness of King Vajiralongkorn's intervention—and the determination it reveals to resist relatively small checks on royal power—is both a snub to the junta and a worry for democrats, some of whom had dared hope that the new king might be happy to take a back seat in public life.
    • 2022 November 25, Daniel Boffey, “Putin’s grip on regional allies loosens again after Armenia snub”, in The Guardian[3], →ISSN:
      The snub from a traditional ally to Putin, who had hosted an inconsequential meeting of the warring countries’ leaders last month, comes immediately on the back of his disastrous summit with six former Soviet states.
  2. A sudden checking of a cable or rope.
  3. (obsolete) A knot; a protuberance; a snag.
Derived terms[edit]


snub (third-person singular simple present snubs, present participle snubbing, simple past and past participle snubbed)

  1. (transitive) To slight, ignore or behave coldly toward someone.
  2. (transitive) To turn down insultingly; to dismiss.
    He snubbed my offer of help.
  3. (transitive) To check; to reprimand.
  4. (transitive) To stub out (a cigarette etc).
  5. (transitive) To halt the movement of a rope etc by turning it about a cleat or bollard etc; to secure a vessel in this manner.
  6. (transitive) To clip or break off the end of; to check or stunt the growth of.


  1. ^ Douglas Harper (2001–2024), “snub”, in Online Etymology Dictionary.

Etymology 2[edit]

Compare Dutch snuiven (to snort, to pant), German schnauben, German dialect schnupfen (to sob), and English snuff (transitive verb).


snub (third-person singular simple present snubs, present participle snubbing, simple past and past participle snubbed)

  1. To sob with convulsions.
    • 1621, Thomas Bedford, The Sinne Vnto Death:
      He striveth, strugleth, roareth, sobbeth, snubbeth, and ready he is to burst for anger.