Definitions

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

  • noun A structure or shelter made or used by a bird to hold its eggs during incubation and to house its young until fledged.
  • noun A structure or shelter in which other animals, such as reptiles, fish, or insects, deposit their eggs or tend their young.
  • noun A structure or complex built by ants, termites, or other social animals to house a colony.
  • noun A number of insects, birds, or other animals occupying a nest.
  • noun A place affording snug refuge or lodging; a home.
  • noun A place or environment that fosters rapid growth or development, especially of something undesirable; a hotbed.
  • noun Those who occupy or frequent such a place or environment.
  • noun A set of objects of graduated size that can be stacked together, each fitting within the one immediately larger.
  • noun A cluster of similar things.
  • noun A group of weapons in a prepared position.
  • intransitive verb To build or occupy a nest.
  • intransitive verb To create and settle into a warm and secure refuge.
  • intransitive verb To hunt for birds' nests, especially in order to collect the eggs.
  • intransitive verb To fit one inside another.
  • intransitive verb To place in or as if in a nest.
  • intransitive verb To put snugly together or inside one another.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • To build or occupy a nest.
  • To relieve nature.
  • To search for nests: as, to go nesting or bird-nesting.
  • To lodge or house in or as in a nest; provide with a place of shelter or resort; build habitations for; house: often used reflexively.
  • To place (articles of graduated size belonging to a set) one within another. See nest, n., 6.
  • noun A structure formed or used by a bird for incubation and the rearing of its young.
  • noun A place where the eggs of insects, turtles, etc., are laid; a place in which the young of certain small animals are reared, or a number of such animals dwelling together: as, a nest of rabbits.
  • noun A snug place of residence; habitation; abode.
  • noun Any abode, especially of evil things: as, a nest of vice.
  • noun A number of persons dwelling or consorting together or resorting to the same haunt, or the haunt itself: generally in a bad sense.
  • noun A series or set, as of boxes, baskets, trays, bowls, etc., of diminishing sizes, each fitting within the next in order.
  • noun A connected series of cog-wheels or pulleys.
  • noun In geology, an aggregated mass of any ore or mineral in an isolated state, within a rock.
  • A Middle English form of next.

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

  • transitive verb To put into a nest; to form a nest for.
  • noun The bed or receptacle prepared by a fowl for holding her eggs and for hatching and rearing her young.
  • noun 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.
  • noun 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
  • noun (Geol.) An aggregated mass of any ore or mineral, in an isolated state, within a rock.
  • noun A collection of boxes, cases, or the like, of graduated size, each put within the one next larger.
  • noun (Mech.) A compact group of pulleys, gears, springs, etc., working together or collectively.
  • intransitive verb To build and occupy a nest.

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

  • noun A structure built by a bird as a place to incubate eggs and rear young.
  • noun A place used by another mammal, fish, amphibian or insect, for depositing eggs and hatching young.
  • noun A snug, comfortable, or cozy residence or job situation.
  • noun A retreat, or place of habitual resort.
  • noun A hideout for bad people to frequent or haunt; a den.
  • noun 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.
  • noun card games 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.
  • noun military A fortified position for a weapon, e.g. a machine gun nest.
  • noun computing A structure consisting of nested structures, such as nested loops or nested subroutine calls.

Etymologies

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

[Middle English, from Old English; see sed- in Indo-European roots.]

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

From Old English nest, from Proto-Germanic *nestaz, from Proto-Indo-European *nisdós (“nest”), a compound of *ni (“down”) and the zero-grade of the root *sed- (“to sit”) (whence also English sit).

Examples

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