What does nest mean?

Definitions for nest

This dictionary definitions page includes all the possible meanings, example usage and translations of the word nest.

Princeton's WordNet

  1. nestnoun

    a structure in which animals lay eggs or give birth to their young

  2. nestnoun

    a kind of gun emplacement

    "a machine-gun nest"; "a nest of snipers"

  3. nestnoun

    a cosy or secluded retreat

  4. nestnoun

    a gang of people (criminals or spies or terrorists) assembled in one locality

    "a nest of thieves"

  5. nestverb

    furniture pieces made to fit close together

  6. nestverb

    inhabit a nest, usually after building

    "birds are nesting outside my window every Spring"

  7. nestverb

    fit together or fit inside

    "nested bowls"

  8. cuddle, snuggle, nestle, nest, nuzzle, draw closeverb

    move or arrange oneself in a comfortable and cozy position

    "We cuddled against each other to keep warm"; "The children snuggled into their sleeping bags"

  9. nestverb

    gather nests


  1. nestnoun

    A structure built by a bird as a place to incubate eggs and rear young.

  2. nestnoun

    A place used by another mammal, fish, amphibian or insect, for depositing eggs and hatching young.

  3. nestnoun

    A snug, comfortable, or cozy residence or job situation.

  4. nestnoun

    A retreat, or place of habitual resort.

  5. nestnoun

    A hideout for bad people to frequent or haunt; a den.

  6. nestnoun

    A home that a child or young adult shares with a parent, guardian, or a person acting in the capacity of a parent or guardian. A parental home.

    I am aspiring to leave the nest.

  7. nestnoun

    A fixed amount of cards in some bidding games awarded to the highest bidder allowing him to exchange any or all with cards in his hand.

    I was forced to change trumps when I found the ace, jack, and nine of diamonds in the nest.

  8. nestnoun

    A fortified position for a weapon, e.g. a machine gun nest.

  9. nestnoun

    A structure consisting of nested structures, such as nested loops or nested subroutine calls.

  10. nestverb

    To build or settle into a nest.

  11. nestverb

    To settle into a home.

    We loved the new house and were nesting there in 2 days!

  12. nestverb

    To successively neatly fit inside another.

    I bought a set of nesting mixing bowls for mom.

  13. nestverb

    To place in, or as if in, a nest.

  14. nestverb

    To place one thing neatly inside another, and both inside yet another (and so on).

    There would be much more room in the attic if you had nested all the empty boxes.

  15. nestverb

    To hunt for birds' nests or their contents (usually "go nesting").

  16. nestnoun

    Pasta formed into a round shape.

  17. Etymology: From nest, from nestaz, from nisdós, a compound of ni and the zero-grade of the root sed- (whence also English sit).

Samuel Johnson's Dictionary

  1. NESTnoun

    Etymology: nest , Saxon.

    If a bird’s nest chance to be before thee in the way, thou shalt not take the dam with the young. Deut. xxii. 6.

    Redi found that all kinds of putrefaction did only afford a nest and aliment for the eggs and young of those insects he admitted. Richard Bentley.

    Come from that nest
    Of death, contagion, and unnatural sleep. William Shakespeare.

    Some of our ministers having livings offered unto them, will neither, for zeal of religion, nor winning souls to God, be drawn forth from their warm nests. Edmund Spenser.

  2. To Nestverb

    To build nests.

    Etymology: from the noun.

    The cedar stretched his branches as far as the mountains of the moon, and the king of birds nested within his leaves. James Howell, Vocal Forest.


  1. Nest

    A nest is a structure built for certain animals to hold eggs or young. Although nests are most closely associated with birds, members of all classes of vertebrates and some invertebrates construct nests. They may be composed of organic material such as twigs, grass, and leaves, or may be a simple depression in the ground, or a hole in a rock, tree, or building. Human-made materials, such as string, plastic, cloth, or paper, may also be used. Nests can be found in all types of habitat. Nest building is driven by a biological urge known as the nesting instinct in birds and mammals. Generally each species has a distinctive style of nest. Nest complexity is roughly correlated with the level of parental care by adults. Nest building is considered a key adaptive advantage among birds, and they exhibit the most variation in their nests ranging from simple holes in the ground to elaborate communal nests hosting hundreds of individuals. Nests of prairie dogs and several social insects can host millions of individuals.


  1. nest

    A nest is a structure or place made or chosen by animals, specifically birds, for laying eggs and sheltering their offspring. However, the term can also be extended to similar structures made by other animals such as insects, rodents or fish. Nests can be constructed from a variety of materials, including twigs, leaves, grass, mud, stones, or even manufactured materials like paper or plastic. The specific design and location of a nest can vary greatly depending on the species.

Webster Dictionary

  1. Nestnoun

    the bed or receptacle prepared by a fowl for holding her eggs and for hatching and rearing her young

  2. Nestnoun

    hence: the place in which the eggs of other animals, as insects, turtles, etc., are laid and hatched; a snug place in which young animals are reared

  3. Nestnoun

    a snug, comfortable, or cozy residence or situation; a retreat, or place of habitual resort; hence, those who occupy a nest, frequent a haunt, or are associated in the same pursuit; as, a nest of traitors; a nest of bugs

  4. Nestnoun

    an aggregated mass of any ore or mineral, in an isolated state, within a rock

  5. Nestnoun

    a collection of boxes, cases, or the like, of graduated size, each put within the one next larger

  6. Nestnoun

    a compact group of pulleys, gears, springs, etc., working together or collectively

  7. Nestverb

    to build and occupy a nest

  8. Nestverb

    to put into a nest; to form a nest for

  9. Etymology: [AS. nest; akin to D. & G. nest, Sw. nste, L. nidus, for nisdus, Skr. na resting place, nest; cf. Lith. lizdas, Arm. neiz, Gael. & Ir. nead. Prob. from the particle ni down, Skr. ni + the root of E. sit, and thus orig., a place to sit down in. 264. See Nether, and Sit, and cf. Eyas, Nidification, Nye.]


  1. Nest

    A nest is a place of refuge to hold an animal's eggs or provide a place to live or raise offspring. They are usually made of some organic material such as twigs, grass, and leaves; or may simply be a depression in the ground, or a hole in a tree, rock or building. Human-made materials, such as string, plastic, cloth, hair or paper, may also be used. Generally each species has a distinctive style of nest. Nests can be found in many different habitats. They are built primarily by birds, but also by mammals, fish, insects and reptiles. The urge to prepare an area for the building of a nest is referred to as the nesting instinct and may occur in both mammals and birds.

Chambers 20th Century Dictionary

  1. Nest

    nest, n. the bed formed by a bird for hatching her young: the place in which the eggs of any animal are laid and hatched: a comfortable residence: a number of persons haunting one place for a bad purpose: the place itself: a number of baskets or boxes each fitting inside the next larger.—v.t. to form a nest for.—v.i. to build and occupy a nest.—n. Nest′-egg, an egg left in the nest to keep the hen from forsaking it: something laid up as the beginning of an accumulation.—Feather one's nest, to provide for one's self, esp. from other people's property of which one has had charge. [A.S. nest; Ger. nest, L. nīdus.]

Dictionary of Nautical Terms

  1. nest

    See CROW'S NEST.

Editors Contribution

  1. nest

    A structure an animal or bird creates for their offspring.

    The birds nest is so beautiful and to see the birds provide for their offspring is a gift of nature

    Submitted by MaryC on March 24, 2020  

Suggested Resources

  1. NEST

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

Surnames Frequency by Census Records

  1. NEST

    According to the U.S. Census Bureau, Nest is ranked #58042 in terms of the most common surnames in America.

    The Nest surname appeared 350 times in the 2010 census and if you were to sample 100,000 people in the United States, approximately 0 would have the surname Nest.

    79.1% or 277 total occurrences were White.
    11.4% or 40 total occurrences were Black.
    6.5% or 23 total occurrences were of Hispanic origin.
    1.4% or 5 total occurrences were Asian.

British National Corpus

  1. Nouns Frequency

    Rank popularity for the word 'nest' in Nouns Frequency: #2010

Anagrams for nest »

  1. sent

  2. sent.

  3. Sten

  4. tens

  5. TENS

  6. ents

  7. nets

How to pronounce nest?

How to say nest in sign language?


  1. Chaldean Numerology

    The numerical value of nest in Chaldean Numerology is: 8

  2. Pythagorean Numerology

    The numerical value of nest in Pythagorean Numerology is: 4

Examples of nest in a Sentence

  1. Madison Cawthorn:

    The vacation house of the Führer. Seeing the Eagles Nest has been on my bucket list for awhile, it did not disappoint.

  2. Sarah Paulson:

    I mean [ Fletcher ] won an Academy Award doing it, so there's no where to go but down, i absolutely feel that pressure because I have an enormous reverence for Louis Fletcher and for Louise Fletcher portrayal in that movie and for the movie itself. This story stands on its own in Sixth Sense that we are starting many years prior to when we meet Nurse Ratched in the movie' Cuckoos Nest,' so I know that I'm not going to be trying to emulate what she did because this is prior to her doing what she did in the movie. I have a little bit of leeway there, but I'm certainly thinking about it.

  3. Melina Avgerinou:

    We teach them what they need to know; where to find food, what they should eat, how they will make their nest in the winter, according to the season, we try to teach them what their mother would have taught them in nature.

  4. Michael Bivona:

    From LIU Magazine-Winter 2016. In response to students question he said: "There is no doubt that the best nest egg is to be successful, and that will only happen if young people have the confidence to invest in themselves first."

  5. Justin Humphreys:

    Nest is just arriving at dealers, we have a waiting list for people to see them.

Popularity rank by frequency of use


Translations for nest

From our Multilingual Translation Dictionary

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"nest." Definitions.net. STANDS4 LLC, 2024. Web. 14 Apr. 2024. <https://www.definitions.net/definition/nest>.

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    applied to a fish depicted horizontally
    A naiant
    B inexpiable
    C commensal
    D lacerate

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