Cambridge Dictionaries online Cambridge Dictionaries online

The most popular online dictionary and thesaurus for learners of English

English definition of “nail”

See all translations

nail

noun [C]  /neɪl/ us  

nail noun [C] (METAL)

a thin piece of metal having a pointed end that is forced into wood or another substance by hitting the other end with a hammer, and is used esp. to join two pieces or to hold something in place

nail noun [C] (BODY PART)

the hard, smooth part at the upper end of each finger and toe

nail

verb [T]  /neɪl/ us  

nail verb [T] (FASTEN)

to attach or fasten with a nail or nails: [M] Workmen were nailing down the carpet. If you nail something shut, you put nails in it to fasten it so that it cannot easily be opened: He nailed the box shut. infml To nail someone is to catch someone in a dishonest or illegal act: We finally nailed the guys dumping garbage in the park.
Phrasal verbs
Translations of “nail”
in Korean 못, 손톱…
in Arabic مِسْمار, ظِفْر…
in French ongle, clou…
in Turkish çivi, tırnak…
in Italian chiodo, unghia…
in Chinese (Traditional) 金屬, 釘,釘子…
in Russian гвоздь, ноготь…
in Polish gwóźdź, paznokieć…
in Spanish uña, clavo…
in Portuguese prego, unha…
in German der Nagel, nagel…
in Catalan clau, ungla…
in Japanese くぎ, (手足の)つめ…
in Chinese (Simplified) 金属, 钉,钉子…
(Definition of nail from the Cambridge Academic Content Dictionary © Cambridge University Press)
What is the pronunciation of nail?
Add Cambridge dictionaries to your browser to your website

Definitions of “nail” in other dictionaries

Word of the Day

work out

to exercise in order to improve the strength or appearance of your body

Word of the Day

Byronic, Orwellian and Darwinian: adjectives from names.

by Liz Walter,
April 15, 2015
Becoming an adjective is a strange kind of memorial, but it is often a sign of a person having had real influence on the world. Science is full of examples, from Hippocrates, the Greek medic born around 460 BC, who gave his name to the Hippocratic Oath still used by doctors today,

Read More 

bio-inspiration noun

April 13, 2015
the adoption of patterns and structures found in nature for the purposes of engineering, manufacturing, science, etc. The MIT researchers actually aren’t the only robotics team to turn to cheetahs for bio-inspiration.

Read More