Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition.

  • transitive verb To break or chip (stone) with sharp blows, as in shaping flint or obsidian into tools.
  • transitive verb To strike sharply; rap.
  • transitive verb To snap at or bite.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • To strike with a sharp noise.
  • To snap; crack; break in pieces with blows: as, to knap stones.
  • To bite; bite off; nibble.
  • To make a short sharp sound.
  • To talk short.
  • noun A short sharp noise; a snap.
  • noun A stroke; blow.
  • noun A clapper.
  • noun A protuberance; a swelling; a knob or button.
  • noun A rising ground; a knoll; a hillock; a summit.
  • noun The bud of a flower.
  • noun The flower of the common clover, Trifolium pratense.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English.

  • noun A protuberance; a swelling; a knob; a button; hence, rising ground; a summit. See knob, and knop.
  • intransitive verb To make a sound of snapping.
  • noun A sharp blow or slap.
  • transitive verb Obs. or Prov. Eng. To bite; to bite off; to break short.
  • transitive verb Chiefly Brit. To strike smartly; to rap; to snap.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

  • noun The crest of a hill
  • noun A small hill
  • verb transitive To shape a vitreous mineral (flint, obsidian, chert etc.) by breaking away flakes, often forming a sharp edge or point.
  • verb transitive To rap or strike sharply.
  • noun A sharp blow or slap.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • verb break a small piece off from
  • verb strike sharply

Etymologies

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

[Middle English knappen, probably of imitative origin.]

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

Middle English, from Old English cnæp, akin to cnotta 'knot'

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

From Middle English knappen, an onomatopeia

Examples

Comments

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  • I remember this delightful word from stage combat training. It's the sound of being "struck," usually made by the victim rather than the aggressor (with notable exceptions), to complete the illusion of there being actual contact.

    Nowadays I hear guys at work using the word to describe chipping a flint into the proper shape/size for use in a musket.

    October 29, 2007

  • You have a strange job.

    October 29, 2007