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A person regarded as weak-willed or timid.

[Yiddish nebekh, poor, unfortunate, of Slavic origin; see bhag- in Indo-European roots.]

neb′bish·y adj.
American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright © 2016 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.


(of a man) timid and submissive
a man who is timid and submissive
Collins English Dictionary – Complete and Unabridged, 12th Edition 2014 © HarperCollins Publishers 1991, 1994, 1998, 2000, 2003, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2011, 2014


(ˈnɛb ɪʃ)

n. Slang.
a pitifully ineffectual, inept, and timid person.
[1890–95; < Yiddish nebekh poor, unfortunate, probably < Slavic; compare Czech nebohý poor]
neb′bish•y, adj.
Random House Kernerman Webster's College Dictionary, © 2010 K Dictionaries Ltd. Copyright 2005, 1997, 1991 by Random House, Inc. All rights reserved.
ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Noun1.nebbish - (Yiddish) a timid unfortunate simpleton
Yiddish - a dialect of High German including some Hebrew and other words; spoken in Europe as a vernacular by many Jews; written in the Hebrew script
simpleton, simple - a person lacking intelligence or common sense
Based on WordNet 3.0, Farlex clipart collection. © 2003-2012 Princeton University, Farlex Inc.


A totally insignificant person:
Informal: pip-squeak, zero.
Slang: shrimp, zilch.
The American Heritage® Roget's Thesaurus. Copyright © 2013, 2014 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.


n (sl)Schlappschwanz m (inf)
Collins German Dictionary – Complete and Unabridged 7th Edition 2005. © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1980 © HarperCollins Publishers 1991, 1997, 1999, 2004, 2005, 2007
References in periodicals archive ?
Dan and Kevin Hageman's script invents a trio of teenagers the nebbish, aspiring writer Stella (Zoe Colletti) and her two pals (Gabriel Rush, Austin Zajur) who, along with a new kid in town (Michael Garza, as a Mexican-American urged to "move along" by the local police).
Crumb was honest about being the sort of resentful nebbish who in his pre-fame days saw women as controlling something he desperately wanted and couldn't have--what would now be called a corrosive "incel" mentality, after the men who self-identify as involuntarily celibate.
After discovering a pair of young ghosts, a nebbish 11-year-old agrees to help the sibling spirits solve the mystery surrounding their demise.
Failure is the theme of her early material.C Her self-mocking nebbish is a familiar persona, but there comes a moment when she drops and deconstructs it, and that turning point makes you re-evaluate everything you saw before.
I think the "nebbish image" dominates the view of Jewish men because negatives tend to prevail in a stereotype.
British baritone Jonathan McGovern's Pelleas enters as the nebbish younger brother to Golaud--there is no mistaking his low status in the pecking order of this household.
So here's my definition of a nebbish: Someone who gets a sunburn during a total solar eclipse.
She makes no demands on the nebbish, but has boundless energy with which to power through his rebuffs.
The warm performances of a terrific cast soften the underlying sadness of Finn's breakthrough musical about a nebbish named Marvin (an endearing performance from Christian Borle) who leaves his loving wife, Trina (Stephanie J.
Sam Lupton plays Seymour as sweet but slightly nebbish, while Stephanie Clift's human Audrey has a fragile goofy charm.
The characters display varying degrees of four historically represented Jewish American stereotypes: "the meddling matriarch," "the neurotic nebbish," "the pampered princess," and "the scheming scumbag." Analyzing Hollywood (qualified as budgets exceeding ten million dollars) and Indie films that were released from 2001 to 2009, New Jews?