What does nail mean?

Definitions for nail

Here are all the possible meanings and translations of the word nail.

Princeton's WordNet

  1. nailnoun

    horny plate covering and protecting part of the dorsal surface of the digits

  2. nailnoun

    a thin pointed piece of metal that is hammered into materials as a fastener

  3. nailverb

    a former unit of length for cloth equal to 1/16 of a yard

  4. nailverb

    attach something somewhere by means of nails

    "nail the board onto the wall"

  5. collar, nail, apprehend, arrest, pick up, nab, copverb

    take into custody

    "the police nabbed the suspected criminals"

  6. smash, nail, boom, blastverb

    hit hard

    "He smashed a 3-run homer"

  7. nail down, nail, pegverb

    succeed in obtaining a position

    "He nailed down a spot at Harvard"

  8. breeze through, ace, pass with flying colors, sweep through, sail through, nailverb

    succeed at easily

    "She sailed through her exams"; "You will pass with flying colors"; "She nailed her astrophysics course"

  9. pinpoint, nailverb

    locate exactly

    "can you pinpoint the position of the enemy?"; "The chemists could not nail the identity of the chromosome"

  10. complete, nailverb

    complete a pass

Webster Dictionary

  1. Nailnoun

    the horny scale of plate of epidermis at the end of the fingers and toes of man and many apes

    Etymology: [AS. naeglian. See Nail, n.]

  2. Nailnoun

    the basal thickened portion of the anterior wings of certain hemiptera

    Etymology: [AS. naeglian. See Nail, n.]

  3. Nailnoun

    the terminal horny plate on the beak of ducks, and other allied birds

    Etymology: [AS. naeglian. See Nail, n.]

  4. Nailnoun

    a slender, pointed piece of metal, usually with a head, used for fastening pieces of wood or other material together, by being driven into or through them

    Etymology: [AS. naeglian. See Nail, n.]

  5. Nailadjective

    a measure of length, being two inches and a quarter, or the sixteenth of a yard

    Etymology: [AS. naeglian. See Nail, n.]

  6. Nailnoun

    to fasten with a nail or nails; to close up or secure by means of nails; as, to nail boards to the beams

    Etymology: [AS. naeglian. See Nail, n.]

  7. Nailnoun

    to stud or boss with nails, or as with nails

    Etymology: [AS. naeglian. See Nail, n.]

  8. Nailnoun

    to fasten, as with a nail; to bind or hold, as to a bargain or to acquiescence in an argument or assertion; hence, to catch; to trap

    Etymology: [AS. naeglian. See Nail, n.]

  9. Nailnoun

    to spike, as a cannon

    Etymology: [AS. naeglian. See Nail, n.]


  1. Nail

    In woodworking and construction, a nail is a pin-shaped, object of metal used as a fastener, peg to hang something, or sometimes a decoration. Generally nails have a point on one end and a head on the other. Formerly wrought iron, today's nails are typically made of steel, often dipped or coated to prevent corrosion in harsh conditions or improve adhesion. Ordinary nails for wood are usually of a soft, low-carbon or "mild" steel. Nails for concrete are harder, with 0.5-0.75% carbon. Nails are typically driven into the workpiece by a hammer, a pneumatic nail gun, or a small explosive charge or primer. A nail holds materials together by friction in the axial direction and shear strength laterally. The point of the nail is also sometimes bent over or clinched after driving to prevent falling out. Nails are made in a great variety of forms for specialized purposes. The most common is a wire nail. Other types of nails include pins, tacks, brads, and spikes.

Chambers 20th Century Dictionary

  1. Nail

    nāl, n. one of the flattened, elastic, horny plates placed as protective coverings on the dorsal surface of the terminal phalanges of the fingers and toes: the claw of a bird or other animal: a thin pointed piece of metal for fastening wood: a measure of length (2¼ inches):—v.t. to fasten with nails: to make certain: to confirm, pin down, hold fast: to catch or secure through promptitude; to trip up or expose.—ns. Nail′-brush, a small brush for cleaning the nails; Nail′er, one whose trade is to make nails; Nail′ery, a place where nails are made.—adj. Nail′-head′ed, having a head like that of a nail: formed like nail-heads, said of ornamental marks on cloth and on certain kinds of mouldings (dog-tooth).—n. Nail′-rod, a strip cut from an iron plate to be made into nails: a trade name for a strong kind of manufactured tobacco.—Nail to the counter, to expose publicly as false, from the habit of nailing a counterfeit coin to a shop counter.—Drive a nail in one's coffin (see Coffin); Hit the nail on the head, to touch the exact point; On the nail, on the spot: immediately: without delay. [A.S. nægel; Ger. nagel.]

Suggested Resources

  1. NAIL

    What does NAIL stand for? -- Explore the various meanings for the NAIL acronym on the Abbreviations.com website.


  1. Nail

    a tarsal claw: specifically the stout pointed claws in predatory Heteroptera = unguis.

British National Corpus

  1. Nouns Frequency

    Rank popularity for the word 'nail' in Nouns Frequency: #1853

Anagrams for nail »

  1. Anil

  2. INLA

  3. Lani

  4. Lina

How to pronounce nail?

How to say nail in sign language?


  1. Chaldean Numerology

    The numerical value of nail in Chaldean Numerology is: 1

  2. Pythagorean Numerology

    The numerical value of nail in Pythagorean Numerology is: 9

Examples of nail in a Sentence

  1. Andy Hall:

    We saw a lot of instances of police abuse and torture that were happening and a concern for us is that the police were just focusing on ways to nail the two defendants, we believe, from my investigation, that they blocked out so much of other evidence that could have been used ... simply to focus on the two accused.

  2. Dan Swangard:

    I don't think we know how to die, we fight tooth and nail to keep that from happening.

  3. Amit Etkin:

    The most critical element, we just don’t have a hammer, we design a hammer to hit the nail. In this case, the nail never actually had a proper hammer to be targeted with.

  4. Carla Ferrigno:

    I am going public( now) because I am just one more person who puts the nail in his coffin.

  5. Maurie Levine:

    It's the second court ruling saying we're entitled to this information - yet TDCJ keeps fighting tooth and nail, ... dragging out the appeals and refusing to comply while executions proceed in secret.

Images & Illustrations of nail

  1. nailnailnailnailnail

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Translations for nail

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    long and thin and often limp
    • A. ostensive
    • B. tenebrous
    • C. lank
    • D. motile

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