(1)   A stroke of the oar that either misses the water or digs too deeply
"He caught a crab and lost the race"
(2)   Decapod having eyes on short stalks and a broad flattened carapace with a small abdomen folded under the thorax and pincers
(3)   Infests the pubic region of the human body
(4)   The edible flesh of any of various crabs
(5)   The fourth sign of the zodiac; the sun is in this sign from about June 21 to July 22
(6)   (astrology) a person who is born while the sun is in Cancer
(7)   A quarrelsome grouch


(8)   Complain
"What was he hollering about?"
(9)   Fish for crab
(10)   Scurry sideways like a crab
(11)   Direct (an aircraft) into a crosswind

Etymology 1

From , from .


  1. A crustacean of the infraorder Brachyura, having five pairs of legs, the foremost of which are in the form of claws, and a carapace.
  2. A bad-tempered person.
  3. An infestation of pubic lice.
    Although crabs themselves are an easily treated inconvenience, the patient and his partner(s) clearly run major STD risks
  4. A playing card with the rank of three.

Related terms
  • craber
  • crabier
  • crabite
  • crab-skuit
  • panier de crabes


  1. To fish for crabs.
  2. To complain.
  3. (by analogy with the movement of a crab) To move sideways of an aircraft, such as a glider.
  4. (by analogy with the movement of a crab) To navigate (an aircraft, e.g. a glider) sideways against an air current in order to maintain a straight-line course.
  5. In World War 1, to fly slightly off the straight-line course towards an enemy aircraft, as the machine guns on early aircraft did not allow firing through the propeller disk.
  6. To back out of something.


  1. The crab apple or wild apple.
  2. The tree bearing crab apples, which has a dogbane-like bitter bark with medical use.


  1. (obsolete) To irritate, make surly or sour
  2. To be ill-tempered
  3. (British dialect) To cudgel or beat, as with a crabstick