grab (v.)

"seize forcibly or roughly," 1580s, from Middle Dutch or Middle Low German grabben "to grab," from Proto-Germanic *grab-, *grap- (source also of Old English græppian "to seize," Old Saxon garva, Old High German garba "sheaf," literally "that which is gathered up together"), from PIE *ghrebh- (1) "to seize, reach" (source also of Sanskrit grbhnati "seizes," Old Persian grab- "seize" as possession or prisoner, Old Church Slavonic grabiti "to seize, rob," Lithuanian grėbti "to rake"). Sense of "to get by unscrupulous methods" was reinforced by grab game, a kind of swindle, attested from 1846. Related: Grabbed; grabbing.

grab (n.)

1777, "thing grabbed;" 1824, "act of grabbing, a sudden grasp or seizing" from grab (v.). Up for grabs attested from 1945 in jive talk.

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