Definitions for: Crab

[n] a stroke of the oar that either misses the water or digs too deeply; "he caught a crab and lost the race"
[n] decapod having eyes on short stalks and a broad flattened carapace with a small abdomen folded under the thorax and pincers
[n] infests the pubic region of the human body
[n] the edible flesh of any of various crabs
[n] the fourth sign of the zodiac; the sun is in this sign from about June 21 to July 22
[n] (astrology) a person who is born while the sun is in Cancer
[n] a quarrelsome grouch
[v] fish for crab

Webster (1913) Definition: Crab (kr[a^]b), n. [AS. crabba; akin to D. krab, G.
krabbe, krebs, Icel. krabbi, Sw. krabba, Dan. krabbe, and
perh. to E. cramp. Cf. Crawfish.]
1. (Zo["o]l.) One of the brachyuran Crustacea. They are
mostly marine, and usually have a broad, short body,
covered with a strong shell or carapace. The abdomen is
small and curled up beneath the body.

Note: The name is applied to all the Brachyura, and to
certain Anomura, as the hermit crabs. Formerly, it was
sometimes applied to Crustacea in general. Many species
are edible, the blue crab of the Atlantic coast being
one of the most esteemed. The large European edible
crab is Cancer padurus. Soft-shelled crabs are blue
crabs that have recently cast their shells. See
Cancer; also, Box crab, Fiddler crab, {Hermit
crab}, Spider crab, etc., under Box, Fiddler.

2. The zodiacal constellation Cancer.

3. [See Crab, a.] (Bot.) A crab apple; -- so named from its
harsh taste.

When roasted crabs hiss in the bowl, Then nightly
sings the staring owl. --Shak.

4. A cudgel made of the wood of the crab tree; a crabstick.
[Obs.] --Garrick.

5. (Mech.)
(a) A movable winch or windlass with powerful gearing,
used with derricks, etc.
(b) A form of windlass, or geared capstan, for hauling
ships into dock, etc.
(c) A machine used in ropewalks to stretch the yarn.
(d) A claw for anchoring a portable machine.

Calling crab. (Zo["o]l.) See Fiddler., n., 2.

Crab apple, a small, sour apple, of several kinds; also,
the tree which bears it; as, the European crab apple
(Pyrus Malus var. sylvestris); the Siberian crab apple
(Pyrus baccata); and the American (Pyrus coronaria).

Crab grass. (Bot.)
(a) A grass (Digitaria, or Panicum, sanguinalis); --
called also finger grass.
(b) A grass of the genus Eleusine (E. Indica); --
called also dog's-tail grass, wire grass, etc.

Crab louse (Zo["o]l.), a species of louse ({Phthirius
pubis}), sometimes infesting the human body.

Crab plover (Zo["o]l.), an Asiatic plover ({Dromas

Crab's eyes, or Crab's stones, masses of calcareous
matter found, at certain seasons of the year, on either
side of the stomach of the European crawfishes, and
formerly used in medicine for absorbent and antacid
purposes; the gastroliths.

Crab spider (Zo["o]l.), one of a group of spiders
(Laterigrad[ae]); -- called because they can run
backwards or sideways like a crab.

Crab tree, the tree that bears crab applies.

Crab wood, a light cabinet wood obtained in Guiana, which
takes a high polish. --McElrath.

To catch a crab (Naut.), a phrase used of a rower:
(a) when he fails to raise his oar clear of the water;
(b) when he misses the water altogether in making a

Crab (kr[a^]b), v. t.
1. To make sour or morose; to embitter. [Obs.]

Sickness sours or crabs our nature. --Glanvill.

2. To beat with a crabstick. [Obs.] --J. Fletcher.

Crab, v. i. (Naut.)
To drift sidewise or to leeward, as a vessel. --Ham. Nav.

Crab, a. [Prob. from the same root as crab, n.]
Sour; rough; austere.

The crab vintage of the neighb'ring coast. --Dryden.

Synonyms: Cancer, Cancer, Cancer the Crab, crab louse, crabby person, crabmeat, Phthirius pubis, pubic louse

See Also: Alaska crab, Alaska crab, Alaska king crab, Alaska king crab, Alaskan king crab, Alaskan king crab, blue crab, Brachyura, Cancer borealis, Cancer irroratus, Cancer magister, churl, crab cocktail, crab legs, crank, crosspatch, decapod, decapod crustacean, Dungeness crab, Dungeness crab, fiddler crab, fish, genus Phthirius, genus Phthirus, grouch, grump, hard-shell crab, house, human, individual, Japanese crab, Jonah crab, king crab, king crab, louse, mansion, Menippe mercenaria, mortal, Paralithodes camtschatica, pea crab, person, Phthirius, Phthirus, planetary house, rock crab, row, rowing, shellfish, sign, sign of the zodiac, soft-shell crab, soft-shell crab, soft-shelled crab, soft-shelled crab, somebody, someone, soul, spider crab, star sign, stone crab, stone crab, suborder Brachyura, sucking louse, swimming crab

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