Definition of dob in English:



[WITH OBJECT]Australian, NZ
  • 1Inform against someone.

    ‘Helen dobbed me in to Mum’
    • ‘He says there are too many spies about and too many people who will dob you in for money.’
    • ‘He says no one will tell him exactly how he got caught, but someone must have dobbed him in.’
    • ‘At least I wont have to worry about Phil dobbing me in anymore.’
    • ‘Trust me, when these restrictions get tightened tomorrow, there will be no shortage of people queuing up to dob her in.’
    • ‘It works as a great deterrent for graffiti artists - they just never know who could dob them in, so they tend to stop.’
    denounce, give away, betray, incriminate, inculpate, report, tell the authorities about, tell the police about
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1[no object]Inform on; betray.
      • ‘Water wasted by householders is but a gnat's whatsit compared to the huge volumes that are wasted by the water companies - dobbing on your neighbour isn't going to solve anything’
      • ‘They must think my brother is pretty cool for not dobbing on me.’
      • ‘He was summoned before the committee and fined for dobbing on a workmate but refused to pay.’
      • ‘How are we going to work together as a community rather than dobbing on each other and isolating each other.’
      • ‘He's in the prison, he's dobbing on his prison mates, on other inmates, and he's very scared for his life.’
      break one's promise to, be disloyal to, be unfaithful to, break faith with, play someone false, fail, let down
      View synonyms
  • 2Contribute money to a common cause.

    ‘everyone dobbed in a few dollars’
  • 3Impose on someone to do something.

    ‘I dobbed him in to do the cleaning’


1950s: figurative use of dialect dob ‘put down abruptly’, later ‘throw something at a target’.