Definition of tab noun from the Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary

     

    tab

     noun
    noun
    BrE BrE//tæb//
     
    ; NAmE NAmE//tæb//
     
    Dining out
     
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  1. 1a small piece of paper, cloth, metal, etc. that sticks out from the edge of something, and that is used to give information about it, or to hold it, fasten it, etc. Insert tab A into slot 1 (= for example to make a model, box, etc.).
  2. 2= tab stop
  3. 3(North American English) = pull tab
  4. 4a bill for goods you receive but pay for later, especially for food or drinks in a restaurant or bar; the price or cost of something a bar tab Can I put it on my tab? The tab for the meeting could be $3 000. Who is going to pick up the tab for the legal expenses? He walked out of the restaurant and left me to pick up the tab for the whole meal. See related entries: Dining out
  5. 5(informal) a small solid piece of an illegal drug a tab of Ecstasy
  6. 6= tablature guitar tabs
  7. Word Originnoun senses 1 to 4 late Middle English: perhaps related to the verb tag. noun sense 5 1960s: abbreviation.Idioms
    keep (close) tabs on somebody/something
     
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    (informal) to watch somebody/something carefully in order to know what is happening so that you can control a particular situation It's not always possible to keep tabs on everyone's movements.
    pick up the bill, tab, etc. (for something)
     
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    (informal) to pay for something The company picked up the tab for his hotel room. The government will continue to pick up college fees for some students.
See the Oxford Advanced American Dictionary entry: tab