Meaning of zap in English:


Pronunciation /zap/

See synonyms for zap

Translate zap into Spanish

verbverb zaps, verb zapping, verb zapped

  • 1with object Destroy or obliterate.

    • ‘zap the enemy's artillery before it can damage your core units’
    • ‘it's vital to zap stress fast’
    • ‘It's heaped full of chlorophyll, which zaps halitosis fast.’
    • ‘Science has wiped out many killer diseases and may soon zap the rest.’
    • ‘You need to have top-flight shooting skills to zap the constantly moving targets that are your enemy.’
    • ‘The stone was zapped and it's passing, so that's good.’
    • ‘California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger has been zapped from the official websites of his Austria birthplace of Graz.’
    • ‘The grapefruit-sized tumor was zapped with chemotherapy, radiation and relentless courage.’
    • ‘I've spotted a grubby fingerprint on the window and I can't concentrate until I've zapped it with a bottle of Dettox and a damp cloth.’
    • ‘In December, doctors zapped Hannah's tumor with the highest possible doses.’
    • ‘Technologically primitive Surrey suburbanites were zapped by future war weaponry; it was a horribly unequal contest.’
    • ‘It zapped the liquid and suddenly there was steam.’
    annihilate, destroy, wipe out, obliterate, wipe off the face of the earth, wipe off the map, kill, slaughter, exterminate, eliminate, liquidate, eradicate, extinguish, finish off, erase, root out, extirpate
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  • 2Move or cause to move suddenly and rapidly.

    • ‘racing cars zapped past us on the track below’
    • ‘I sat there watching the chat screen zapping up past me, just about going crosseyed trying to read it all.’
    • ‘A bolt of (cheaply superimposed) energy zaps past him.’
    • ‘The awareness of what was occurring zapped through me, and suddenly I was snapped back into my body as if I'd been shot from a slingshot.’
    • ‘A fascinating linguistic theory has been zapping around the internet over the past week.’
    hurry, race, run, sprint, speed, dash, bolt, dart, rush, hasten, hurtle, career, streak, shoot, whizz, zoom, go like lightning, go hell for leather, spank along, bowl along, rattle along, whirl, whoosh, buzz, swoop, flash, blast, charge, stampede, gallop, sweep, hare, fly, wing, scurry, scud, scutter, scramble
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    1. 2.1no object Use a remote control to change television channels or operate a video recorder or other piece of electronic equipment.
      ‘video recorders mean the audience will zap through the ads’
      • ‘No one is obliged to watch television and you can always zap between channels.’
      • ‘Several talk of how they used to zap to another channel whenever politics came on television.’
      • ‘I had nothing to do the night before a game and I was zapping between the channels.’
      • ‘Tuning out completely is not an option for most voters, unless their television sets can zap out commercials.’
      • ‘With one hand he zapped through the channels on the telly while expertly opening a bottle of ale with the other.’
      • ‘They have always seemed, I'm ashamed to say, a bit like the weather forecast: predictable, dull, a cue to zap to another channel.’
      • ‘Sadly, modern TV executives are more worried about holding zapping audiences and ratings figures than about television as an arts and culture source.’


  • A sudden effect or event that makes a dramatic impact, especially a sudden burst of energy or sound.

    • ‘the eggs get an extra zap of UV light’
    • ‘A zap sound ended the vision and then he was left with Ami.’
    • ‘He insists he is not clairvoyant as a result of the zap.’
    • ‘The spells make the appropriate zaps and sizzles, the explosions sound good, and the clanging of weapons on armor are realistic.’
    • ‘If I had a stun gun, I'd give them all a collective zap.’
    • ‘One zap with my racket and the pesky mosquitoes are dead.’
    • ‘I remember one episode when he cured chronic kidney failure with a quick zap on his twisty thing.’
    • ‘There may be just a zap between them, but they are two completely different creatures.’
    • ‘He received a zap, shrieked slightly at his own stupidity, and yanked away.’
    • ‘As I saw it, the only thing that would keep me from noshing away on her famous baked brie would be a zap or two.’
    • ‘As soon as Xander's hand made contact with Pheobe's, Pheobe felt as if a zap of electricity went through her body and her heart started to beat faster.’
    • ‘All the hydrogen and oxygen need is a zap of electrolysis.’
    • ‘A zap through of news channels will reveal this rotund surgeon, laying claim to be the sole representative of Hindu sentiment in this country.’


1920s (originally US): imitative.