Main definitions of tab in English

: tab1tab2tab3tab4tab5TAB6

tab1

noun

  • 1A small flap or strip of material attached to or projecting from something, used to hold, fasten, or manipulate it, or for identification and information.

    • ‘The shopkeeper undid the clasp binding the date book closed and heaved it open, revealing a binder with unusually long pages and alphabetical identification tabs protruding from the edges.’
    • ‘The case has a recessed, extra-wide handle, tabs for tie-down straps, and multiple padlock positions.’
    • ‘Pull up the tabs on each end and slide the blinds out.’
    • ‘I would also ask the Court to note that the tabs which were attached to our original submissions are still relevant and should be kept, as they will be referred to.’
    • ‘The Velcro tabs that are on the flap are another example of great attention to detail.’
    • ‘‘New Easy To Open Box’ I read, while angrily pulling at various corners before working out that you lift the tab marked with the arrow to open a secret panel in the centre.’
    • ‘And - the final stroke of genius - a Velcro tab is sewn into the inside of the hood to attach a pacifier.’
    • ‘Now, folks, here's a brand-new sleeve of balls, and if you'll just take the time to examine it carefully, you'll find a little tab at both ends.’
    • ‘As soon as she got to the identification tab, she began to laugh.’
    • ‘Attach the two-piece mounting assembly to the box tabs.’
    • ‘The fun in this book is in pulling the tabs and lifting the flaps to see all the crazy things Grandma knits: woolly wigs, penguin pullovers, even the dinner meal!’
    • ‘Each of these three flat, ovoid shapes has a slit that runs from one edge to the center, where it divides into a pair of shapes like commas, leaving a rounded tab from which the piece is hung.’
    • ‘If you've selected the correct model, it will closely mate with the contour of your revolver's front strap, retained in place by a pair of thin copper tabs.’
    • ‘It's easiest to mount the retail heat sink by attaching the tabs in the diagonally opposed corners.’
    • ‘He had to move slowly to keep from losing control of the tab when the zipper resisted.’
    • ‘Young children love to join in, so look for books with flaps, tabs, pop-ups, peep-holes, textures to feel and questions to answer.’
    • ‘The thin foil eliminated the need for a metal shell around the battery, and the electrical leads are simple foil tabs attached to the pouch.’
    tag, flap, loop, lappet, label
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1British Military A marking on the collar distinguishing an officer of high rank or (formerly) a staff officer.
      • ‘According green tabs to military police leaders commanding such units as divisional MP platoons or squads in combat support companies in itself does not make military police a combat arm.’
      • ‘The green tabs should be placed on MP unit leaders' shoulders in recognition that they are equals with their combat branch counterparts when it comes to commanding their units in battle.’
      • ‘I looked at his rank tabs through the binoculars, and, having convinced myself that he wasn't an officer, gave him the bird as he passed.’
      • ‘Only then will they be awarded the coveted Green Beret and Special Forces tab, signifying that they are fully prepared to join the brotherhood of Special Forces warriors.’
    2. 1.2
      North American term for ring pull
      • ‘While aluminium drink cans are easily recycled, the ring pull tabs that open those cans are usually dumped.’
      • ‘It had been a metal top from a can, the kind you pull off with a tab.’
      • ‘After a struggle, she got the bag of chips open and popped the tab on her soda.’
      • ‘When someone shakes a soft drink can before opening it, then pulls the tab, the contents spurt out.’
      • ‘In the morning we found the empty soda cans properly opened with the tabs provided for this and they were empty and lined up in a row just like a person had set them down.’
      • ‘Brent pulled a soda out of his jacket, popped the tab, and began drinking.’
      • ‘Charities and the aluminium industry have been fighting the misconceptions about collecting pop can tabs for a number of years.’
      • ‘Dismissing the thought, he pulled open the tab on a can of beer from a six pack he had found, along with a lot of spoiled food, in a fridge in the basement.’
  • 2Computing
    A second or further document or page that can be opened on a spreadsheet or web browser.

    • ‘You can now do one-touch bookmarking of favorites right from the favorites tab.’
    • ‘A new + button on the right side of the tab bar makes it easier to create new tabs.’
    • ‘Reordering the bookmarks will change the tab or window order, too.’
    • ‘You use the ruler or the Tabs dialog box to set the tabs.’
    • ‘If you mistakenly close out of a tab, the new tab button allows you to restore recently closed pages.’
  • 3North American informal A restaurant bill.

    ‘the waiter brought three drinks and a new tab’
    • ‘Unfortunately it's the poor waiter or waitress that is responsible for an unpaid tab; they get stuck for the money.’
    • ‘Corporations routinely pay the tabs of reporters who hang out at exclusive golf clubs and hostess bars.’
    • ‘The waiter comes over, they are obviously on good terms, he is a regular, and Gilbert pays his tab, rolls up his newspaper, and leaves the cafe.’
    • ‘He pulled out his wallet and fished out a five-dollar bill for his tab.’
    • ‘Forget about the hefty bar tabs and the dinner bills: talk or chat the night away, and when the time is right, you can personally meet each other and have the time of your lives.’
    • ‘I have personally witnessed such a case where the size of the gift was reduced by more than half because of several high restaurant tabs.’
    • ‘Not connecting this weirdness to himself - he wasn't breaking any laws - he paid his tab and walked outside to his car.’
    • ‘Restaurants often add a service charge on to the tab, thereby avoiding the possibility that even the most indifferent service does not go unrewarded.’
    • ‘Press 1 while you're at it if you want 10 percent off your tab at a nearby restaurant; press 2 if you want to reserve a table right now.’
    • ‘But experts report that discount-happy diners are clipping coupons and scouting for values to lower their restaurant tabs.’
    • ‘Swipe these sleek timepieces at a reader, and the tab is automatically charged to your credit card.’
    • ‘Nathan discreetly ordered for the bill to be put on his tab as the two friends spoke with another.’
    • ‘Drake and Spade sat down, both avoiding looking at the girls as they paid their tab at the register and left.’
    • ‘Keep in mind the tab was over $300 and they had Benny, the career waiter, running back and forth for hours.’
    • ‘As for me, one of the many advantages to the noon - 2 party time was that it wasn't long enough to work up too expensive a tab, anyway.’
    bill, invoice, account, statement, list of charges, note of charges, charge, reckoning, tally
    View synonyms
    1. 3.1 A tally of items ordered in a bar or restaurant.
      ‘Bobby had told the barman to put everything on the tab’
      • ‘I remember when I was hanging out at this strip club in the UK; I decided to put all my friends' drinks on my tab.’
      • ‘I ordered a Canadian to start my tab and took my place at the bar with a few friends.’
      • ‘Ordinarily this would have given her pause before purchasing the bar; however, she dismissed it quickly as she had no intention of accosting customers about their bar tabs.’
      • ‘With a soft shake of his head at her obvious sadness, he turned to the register to tally up the tabs for the night and turn them in to the office.’
      • ‘Apparently he was either really rich or really respected or both, because everybody knew him and he didn't pay for a thing as far as Alex could see, which meant he had a tab running or they sent him the bill at another time.’
      • ‘If so, e-mail them to me (preferably with a link to a reasonably reputable source) and I'll start keeping a running tab here at the bar.’
      • ‘Unmoved by a chorus of anguished cries, the Biltmore crew calmly rounded up the glasses, tallied the tabs and shrugged off entreaties for special dispensation.’
      • ‘He took him on trips, gave him endless free meals on his tab, gave him contributions galore.’
      • ‘Do not start a tab on a credit card unless you will be ordering more than two rounds.’
      • ‘It's a lot easier on bartenders if people start buying rounds rather than 6 individual guys trying to order one drink at a time, and open/shut a tab.’
      • ‘Though he was unsuccessful in getting the project to fund his bar tab, the student did gain access to and information from the target group.’
      • ‘I'll stick it on my tab anyway, so it's no trouble.’
      • ‘These charges are posted automatically to your shipboard account, and like bar tabs, can add up quickly.’
      • ‘As a struggling performer, Gleason ran a long-standing tab at a Philadelphia restaurant, Hackett said.’
      • ‘Since it was a seated show, I opened a tab… because I was feeling fancy.’
      • ‘I'll leave the tab open for when you want another drink.’
  • 4tabs

  • 5Aeronautics
    A part of a control surface, typically hinged, that modifies the action or response of the surface.

    • ‘Spring tabs were added to the elevators and rudders to help control forces during high speed flight.’
    • ‘The rudder-tab-linkage fitting had also been sheared, disconnecting the rudder tab from the flight controls.’
    • ‘All tabs were activated by a tab-operating mechanism attached to the fixed surface and by a linkage to give servo action.’
    • ‘Both the vertical and horizontal stabilizers were fixed in position, trim being obtained by means of controllable tabs in the rudder and elevators.’
    • ‘Should the airplane enter what is known as a ‘deep stall,’ the wing can mask the flow of air over the tail surfaces, blanking out the control tabs.’
  • 6Northern English informal A cigarette.

verb

[WITH OBJECT]
  • 1Mark or identify with a projecting piece of material.

    ‘he opened the book at a page tabbed by a cloth bookmark’
    • ‘His copy of The Diviners was meticulously tabbed and flagged and he had a thick file of all of the emails that the two men had exchanged with each other before this evening.’
    1. 1.1North American Identify as being of a specified type or suitable for a specified position.
      ‘he was tabbed by the President as the next Republican National Committee chairman’
      • ‘In the Breeders' Cup Mile, we have tabbed Godolphin's English Group 1 winner Noverre as Europe's best chance.’
      • ‘Many league observers have tabbed 2004 second-round pick Tatum Bell as the likely heir to Portis.’
      • ‘The coach has tabbed Porter as one of his main projects for the off season.’
      • ‘If a number 1 guy had to be identified today, coaches would tab the bullish Davis, who has run with purpose all spring.’
      • ‘With that in mind, we dug through our archives for some names that we tabbed as coaches on the rise 10 years ago.’
      • ‘But the Willis who came out of the pen was the one I'd tabbed as a potential sleeper in my quick pre-Series analysis, and he took care of business.’
      • ‘The consensus tabbed him starter, and it's hard to dispute dial given his ‘stuff’ and poise.’
      • ‘In fact, the Bucs are willing to occasionally defy conventional thinking by tabbing players considered too small to succeed in the NFL if they had good college careers.’
      • ‘There were some concerns at safety, which had been tabbed as the strongest position in this year's draft.’
      • ‘A 10-game winning streak vaulted Boston into contention with the White Sox and the Detroit Tigers, whom the writers had tabbed as early-season favorites.’
      • ‘Both franchises tabbed enthusiastic, young head coaches - defense-first coaches - to lead the turnaround.’
      • ‘Since then, we've tabbed 17 players as the brightest new stars at the prep, college, and pro levels.’
      • ‘He was the guy owner Jerry Jones had tabbed as the person to take over the team, and Parcells wanted to coach the Cowboys.’
      • ‘He was the one tabbed to play in the All-Star Game on Feb. 8 in Minnesota.’
      • ‘Eager for another opportunity to appear in a film with Loren, Grant was agreeable to a starring role in Paramount's Houseboat, a film that the studio had tabbed as a vehicle for Loren, whom they had just signed to a four picture deal.’
      • ‘Now the Patriots are favoured and it's the Eagles, tabbed as seven-point underdogs by Las Vegas odds-makers, who have been given no chance to win their first Super Bowl championship.’
      • ‘Riley doesn't profess to worry that he's tabbing the rookie Wade to lead his team.’
      • ‘If he's feeling any pressure as the man tabbed to replace the All-Star, it hasn't shown in camp.’

Phrases

  • keep tabs (or a tab) on

    • informal Monitor the activities or development of; keep under observation.

      ‘they liked to keep tabs on their former employees’
      • ‘A governing body kept tabs on what the public was watching, and there was constant dialogue with the producers of the shows.’
      • ‘Judging and keeping tabs on who or what is cool and who is a sellout is a tremendous waste of time.’
      • ‘He studies draft prospects and keeps tabs on their development.’
      • ‘This would enable the council's planning enforcement officers and police to keep tabs on which establishments were opening too late.’
      • ‘She keeps tabs on who's checking out and who's staying on, and reports to Ross each morning.’
      • ‘Under these guidelines the banks are supposed to keep a tab on money laundering activities by its customers.’
      • ‘It receives contributions from local people and takes particular relish in keeping tabs on the activities of the local council.’
      • ‘And, exactly for this reason, he had been keeping a tab on what is happening on the board of his immediate challenger.’
      • ‘In the car, monitoring equipment keeps tabs on the state of the engine.’
      • ‘Even though I've not been directly involved, I was still keeping a tab on how it worked out.’
  • pick up the tab

    • informal Pay for something.

      ‘my company will pick up the tab for all moving expenses’
      • ‘After all, while an elderly person is in hospital it is the health authority that picks up the tab for their care, not the council.’
      • ‘Now that the state picks up the tab, the ownership structure is an uncomfortable anachronism.’
      • ‘The local authority is picking up the tab for practically all costs associated with the development of the estate.’
      • ‘For example, the company picks up the tab for employees who want to study at third level and provides them with study and exam leave.’
      • ‘The province picked up the tab to rebuild the roadway, while the city paid for the sidewalks and boulevard enhancements through frontage levies and general taxation.’
      • ‘Moving, even when your employer picks up the tab, is expensive.’
      • ‘You will, however, as a taxpayer be indirectly picking up the tab for the accident.’
      • ‘But who ultimately picks up the tab for damages awarded against the County Council?’
      • ‘Once injuries are assessed by management and judged genuine, the club picks up the tab for whatever treatment is required.’
      • ‘When four or more people share a cab, the grateful city picks up the tab.’
      pay, pay up, pay out, pay the bill, settle up
      View synonyms

Origin

Late Middle English: perhaps related to tag.

Pronunciation

tab

/tab/

Main definitions of tab in English

: tab1tab2tab3tab4tab5TAB6

tab2

noun

  • A facility in a word-processing program, or a device on a keyboard, for advancing to a sequence of set positions in tabular work.

    as modifier ‘the tab key’
    • ‘But the thing that is disappointing is you cannot enlarge the text on the tabs.’
    • ‘In what I can describe only as a moment of temporary inspiration, I dropped into a command-line and typed xml followed by two tabs.’
    • ‘I spent about an hour deleting tabs, inserting returns, and reformatting the document so that everything was aligned correctly again.’

verb

  • 1no object Use the tab key on a computer or typewriter keyboard.

    ‘the user can tab to the phrase and press Enter’
    • ‘Once installed, traditional Linux / UNIX escaping, quoting or tabbing is necessary to get to directories with spaces in their names.’
    • ‘It's very addictive, a one-key alternative to tabbing your way through a page of results.’
  • 2

    short for tabulate

Origin

Early 20th century: short for tabulator.

Pronunciation

tab

/tab/

Main definitions of tab in English

: tab1tab2tab3tab4tab5TAB6

tab3

noun

informal
  • A tablet, especially one containing an illicit drug.

    ‘he faced charges of attempting to export Ecstasy tabs’
    • ‘I doubt that my own ecstasy use was a factor in my depression, since I can remember being seriously depressed long before I ever saw a tab of ecstasy.’
    • ‘And this means that you have to live in a society where an 80-year-old grandmother can score heroin quicker than a tab of aspirin.’
    • ‘It was either the fact he had decided to emerge himself in a fictional world instead of having a real life, or it was the acid tabs he ate like Skittles.’
    • ‘The letter warns parents that if their child gets hold of the tabs, they are ‘not to handle them under any circumstances, as they are known to react quickly’.’
    • ‘But the truth was I hadn't a clue what an ecstasy tab looked like and didn't want to show my ignorance.’
    • ‘Anyway, we dropped a tab and the room turned even more bonkers than before, ending up with my then-boyfriend deciding to play his Magic Roundabout record at 5am.’
    • ‘Upset with his employer's decision, he ingested four tabs of methamphetamine.’
    • ‘A man took an LSD tab from someone at a party although he did not want it, so as not to let himself down before his peers.’
    • ‘We wore wild clothes, we grew our hair down to our shoulders, we smoked marijuana and popped tabs of acid, and we compulsively questioned authority.’
    • ‘Between 1970 and 1977, he helped market and distribute more than 20 million tabs of LSD manufactured in labs outside London.’
    • ‘My sleep is much improved though the doctor refused my latest request for sleeping tabs.’
    • ‘And then the young star offers a gift of tabs of Ecstasy.’
    • ‘Here, my eyes would glaze over as I flash backed to the summer I spent putting little purple microdot tabs of mescaline in my mouth, waiting for that hallucinatory high.’
    • ‘In the summer of 1970 he took his first tab of LSD and then his first joint of marijuana.’
    • ‘I also forgot my tabs and ended up puking most of the morning.’
    • ‘It had been downhill all the way after he was caught turning out 20,000 ecstasy tabs in Ma's kitchen - and with Ma's best pans, too.’
    • ‘I'd dropped a acid tab earlier in the evening and was on a totally Baccahnailan trip.’
    • ‘He has tried everything in the book from patches and sub lingual tabs, to plastic cigarettes and hypnotherapy, and he is still trying.’
    • ‘He took one half a tab of ecstasy with a lot of water.’
    • ‘And believe it or not, I actually liked the song without the LSD tabs for hors d' oeuvres.’

Origin

1960s: abbreviation.

Pronunciation

tab

/tab/

Main definitions of tab in English

: tab1tab2tab3tab4tab5TAB6

tab4

noun

North American
informal
  • A tabloid newspaper.

    ‘she tries to cover up his peccadillos before they make the tabs' front pages’
    • ‘To lend the tabs credibility, the editor has been outspoken about changing their longs-tanding policy of paying for stories.’
    • ‘This scandal was well known to readers of American papers but there was not a word in any British newspaper, broadsheet or tab, and of course nothing on the BBC, the only radio station.’
    • ‘I'm not a tabloid reporter, though some of my stories have sent the tabs into a frenzy.’
    • ‘The chap ignored them completely, reading a tab with a headline something like Terror Wife Found Hanging.’
    • ‘There's no question that we competed with the Daily News, but not because it was a tab.’
    • ‘No wonder the tabs report every month or two that she has gone on yet another crash diet.’
    • ‘Once you get in the daily tabs you don't ever want to leave; and you spend the rest of your time trying to get back in.’
    • ‘That's not a shock to anybody who reads the tabs.’
    • ‘A final point: if the tabs didn't write about her doing drugs… well, there's not much of a story there, is there?’

Origin

1920s: abbreviation.

Pronunciation

tab

/tab/

Main definitions of tab in English

: tab1tab2tab3tab4tab5TAB6

tab5

noun

  • ‘get tips on learning how to read guitar tab’
    short for tablature
    • ‘This is the Tab for the Mandolin solo.’
    • ‘Calling all guitar heroes: I know I'm going to regret this, but I just printed out the tabs for the intro to Smoke on the Water.’
    • ‘I have been waiting for days, but my fingers don't stretch the right way, or I can't find the tab for the chord and when I do the notes have stopped ringing and it doesn't seem the same.’
    • ‘I remade the guitar tabs.’
    • ‘I was even becoming better at writing tabs for my guitar.’
    • ‘It made me realise what an imperfect system guitar tab is.’
    • ‘Can you send me the tabs for the fast solos.’
    • ‘This is where you will find song lyrics and guitar tabs.’
    • ‘Here's the lyrics (and the guitar tab) for it.’
    • ‘I looked up a tab for one of the songs that I thought I might take a stab at playing.’
    • ‘The rest of the song is pretty similar; you shouldn't have too much trouble figuring it out by using the Tab for the verses as a basis.’
    • ‘I had the guitar tab to this album once, and learned to play a bunch of it.’
    • ‘Hopefully, they might allow the sites to print the lyrics if they remove their archives of guitar tabs for the songs.’
    • ‘Liz already had the tabs for the 12 Stones song they were doing and sat down at her guitar and played them for Brent.’
    • ‘It's one thing to have the ukulele tabs, quite another to play it properly.’
    • ‘It's in standard Mandolin tuning - see the "Copperhead Road" Tab for details.’

Pronunciation

tab

/tab/

Main definitions of tab in English

: tab1tab2tab3tab4tab5TAB6

TAB6

  • 1NZ Australian Totalizator Agency Board.

  • 2Typhoid–paratyphoid A and B vaccine.

Pronunciation

TAB

/tab/