Basic+ Word of the Day: stab

stab (verb, noun) past tense: stabbed LISTEN

Stab means ‘to push a knife into something or someone.’

  • The murderer stabbed the man in the heart.
  • The hungry diner stabbed his steak with his knife and fork.

A stab is the act of stabbing.

  • The pain was so sharp, it felt like a stab in the heart.

Common uses

take a stab: to try or attempt. Example: “Even if you don’t know the answer, just take a stab at it.”

stab in the back: to betray. Example: “I thought you were my friend, but you stabbed me in the back when you told everyone my secret.”

In pop culture

One of the most famous stabbings in drama is in Romeo and Juliet when Juliet stabs herself. Watch this dramatic scene:

There are other meanings of stab.
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