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snap - definition and synonyms


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verb snap pronunciation in American English /snæp/
Word Forms
present tense
present participlesnapping
past tensesnapped
past participlesnapped
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  1. 1
    [intransitive/transitive] to suddenly break something with a short loud noise, or to be broken in this way

    When the rope snapped, Davis fell into the water.

    snap (something) off:

    Ken snapped off the smaller branches.

    Synonyms and related words
  2. 2
    [intransitive/transitive] to quickly move something such as a light switch so that it makes a short sound, or to be moved quickly in this way
    snap (something) open/shut/together/on/off:

    She quickly snapped her purse shut.

    It’s really simple to build – the pieces just snap together.

  3. 3
    [intransitive] to suddenly lose control and become extremely angry or upset because a situation has become too annoying or difficult

    She was bound to snap under all that pressure.

    1. a.
      [intransitive/transitive] to speak to someone in a sudden, angry way

      “What do you want now?” he snapped angrily.

      snap at:

      I’m sorry I snapped at you just now.

  4. 4
    [intransitive/transitive] if an animal such as a dog snaps you or snaps at you, it bites you or tries to bite you
    snap at:

    A terrier was snapping at his heels.

  5. 5
    [transitive] mainly British informal to take a photograph of someone or something

phrasal verbs


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in an online conversation, repeatedly asking a person questions which suggest that you are interested in what they are talking about, but are actually intended to annoy them

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