The Meaning of Snap: What It Is and How To Use It

Do you know the definition of snap? This article will provide you with all of the information you need on the word snap, including its definition, etymology, usage, example sentences, and more!

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What does the word snap mean?

According to Your Dictionary and Word Sense, as well as the American Heritage Unabridged Dictionary of the English Language and Collins English Dictionary, the word snap is a noun, adjective and verb that can be used in many different ways. The word snap can refer to a fastener, catch or stud that closes by pressure and clicks together, or a fastening device. The word snap can also refer to a quick or sudden grab or bite, such as how a dog snaps its jaws. The word snap can also refer to the onomatopoeic snapping sound or cracking sound of a whip that is created with the thumb and middle finger or ring finger against the palm. This brisk movement of the thumb is used to get someone’s attention. A snap can refer to a photograph that a camera’s shutter takes, a thin circular cookie, a snap bean, or a very short period of time. Snap is also a noun meaning the sudden breakage of tension or sudden release of something, such as an elastic band or thread. Snap can be used as a verb to mean to grab or snatch. Snap can also mean a short period of time, often used with cold weather, like a cold snap. The word snap is also a term in American football that refers to a hike on the line of scrimmage, which is the passing of a football from the center to a back that begins the start of each play. Snap can mean the tendency of a body to take its original shape, like an elastic waistband. Snap is also a card game. The card game snap is played with cards of equal value. Snap can be used as an adjective to mean quick or sudden, or done in an abrupt way, like snap judgments, or as a verb to mean to give way suddenly under emotional stress or strain. The word snap can also be used as an interjection to express surprise or in place of expletive

What is the origin of the word snap?

According to Etymonline, the word snap has been used since the late 15c and comes from the Middle Dutch and Middle Low Germansnappen, related to the Old Norse snapa and Middle Low German or Middle Dutch snavel

How can the word snap (adj./v./n.) be used in a sentence?

The word snap can be used in many different ways in the English language. Using words in a sentence is a great way to solidify the memorization of their definitions. You can also make flashcards or quizzes to test yourself on your vocabulary. Try using this word of the day in a sentence today! Below are several examples of the word snap to help get your started.

She snapped out of a deep depression nearing a mental breakdown when she suddenly found herself rescuing a dog that was used for bait.

She made a snap decision to sub out her teammate John on the ping pong team who had an illness for the rookie of the team.

He made a snap decision in the spur of the moment to pull an all nighter for the exam. He lived on a morsel of coffee and a scrap of bread here and there to stay awake.

The firewood snaps perfectly in half when the lumberjack swings the axe down on it. 

The rude passenger made a snap with his opposing finger while holding a tight grip on the handle in the car. This was just a fragment of his horrible treatment of people in service positions like vacuum cleaners. Even the slightest mistake would set him off in a single quick moment and have him treating people like servants. The sound of his index finger hitting his palm drove the driver crazy.

The snap of the small hand-held camera surprised the woman with tis sharp cracking noise.

What are synonyms of snap?

There are many different words that one can use in place of the word snap. These are called synonyms, which are words and phrases that have the same or a similar meaning as another word or phrase. Synonyms are a useful English grammatical tool to have in your arsenal. They can help you expand your English language vocabulary, adn help you avoid repeating the same word over and over again. There are few different words that have the opposite meaning as the word snap, but these would be known as antonyms. This list of synonyms for the word snap is provided by Power Thesaurus.

  •  catch
  •  picture
  •  come apart
  •  splinter
  •  lose it
  •  detent
  •  say angrily
  •  chew
  •  elasticity
  •  flick
  •  duck soup
  •  spell
  •  growl
  •  break
  •  snapshot
  •  clasp
  •  flip
  •  crepitate
  •  crack up
  •  period
  •  fall to pieces
  •  easy thing
  •  spur-of-the-moment
  •  nip
  •  snarl
  •  snap to
  •  effortless
  •  photograph
  •  bust
  •  cakewalk
  •  elementary
  •  still
  •  yank
  •  piece of cake
  •  tear
  •  shatter
  •  impulsive
  •  doddle
  •  walk in the park
  •  burst
  •  uncomplicated
  •  picnic
  •  photo
  •  smash
  •  click
  •  jerk
  •  painless
  •  print
  •  bang
  •  as easy as pie
  •  break down
  •  centering
  •  pushover
  •  clack
  •  popping
  •  cinch
  •  child’s play
  •  walkover
  •  pop
  •  snap fastener
  •  undemanding
  •  gingersnap
  •  slide
  •  freak out
  •  no sweat
  •  snatch
  •  breaking
  •  crackling
  •  rupture
  •  shoot
  •  munch
  •  say brusquely
  •  button
  •  clap
  •  shot
  •  capture on film
  •  grab
  •  crackle
  •  flare up
  •  snatch up
  •  easy
  •  broke
  •  straightforward
  •  bark
  •  latch
  •  fracture
  •  press stud
  •  extemporaneous
  •  simple
  •  crack
  •  breeze
  •  ginger nut
  •  ginger snap
  •  cracking
  •  split
  •  fastener
  •  snip
  •  film
  •  bite
  •  clicking

Overall, the word snap means many different things, from a sudden sharp cracking sound to a clasp, to the verb to grab. This is also a card game like spades, the rapid movement of a finger to the base of a thumb, an informal photograph, a sudden sharp noise, and more.


  1. snap: meaning, origin, translation | Word Sense
  2. Snap Meaning | Best 116 Definitions of Snap | Your Dictionary 
  3. snap | Origin and meaning of snap by Online Etymology Dictionary 
  4. Snap synonyms – 2 917 Words and Phrases for Snap | Power Thesaurus