Swab meaning

swŏb
Swab means to clean.

An example of swab is to use a mop to clean the deck of a ship; swab the deck.

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(slang) A sailor.
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(slang) A lout.
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The definition of a swab is a yarn mop, a piece of material used for cleaning or removing matter from the body.

An example of a swab is a mop used for cleaning a kitchen floor.

An example of a swab is a piece of cotton used for removing ear wax.

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A sponge or patch of absorbent material used to clean the bore of a firearm or cannon.
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A mop used for cleaning floors or decks.
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To use a swab on.
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To clean with a swab.
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To collect a sample from (a person, for example) using a swab.
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A yarn mop, usually used wet, for cleaning decks, floors, etc.
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A brush, wad of cloth, etc. on a long handle, for cleaning the barrel of a gun.
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(slang) A clumsy, loutish person.
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To use a swab on; clean, medicate, etc. with a swab.
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To use a swab on.
verb
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To clean with a swab.
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To collect a sample from using a swab.
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(medicine) A small piece of soft, absorbent material, such as gauze, used to clean wounds, apply medicine, or take samples of body fluids. Often attached to a stick or wire to aid access.
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A sample taken with a swab (1).
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A piece of material used for cleaning or sampling other items like musical instruments or guns.
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A mop, especially on a ship.
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(slang) A sailor; a swabby.
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To use a swab on something, or clean something with a swab.

Swab the deck of a ship.

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Origin of swab

  • Back-formation from swabber mop for a ship's deck (from obsolete Dutch zwabber) (from zwabben to mop) or from obsolete Dutch swabbe mop (from Middle Dutch)

    From American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition