zapped; zapping; zaps

Something that happens abruptly and dramatically is a zap, like a zap of electricity or a zap of insight, an idea that comes to you in a sudden burst.

You can also use zap as a verb to mean "strike forcefully" or " cook in a microwave." So characters in the Star Wars movies zap each other with light sabres, but the only zapping you do is when you zap your cold pizza in the microwave. While some credit the 1940s comic Buck Rogers in the Twenty-Fifth Century with the first zap, it was probably coined about 20 years earlier.

Definitions of zap
  1. noun
    a sudden event that imparts energy or excitement, usually with a dramatic impact
    “they gave it another zap of radiation”
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    type of:
    something that happens at a given place and time
  2. verb
    strike suddenly and with force
    “This show zaps the viewers with some shocking scenes”
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    type of:
    affect, impress, move, strike
    have an emotional or cognitive impact upon
  3. verb
    strike at with firepower or bombs
    zap the enemy”
    synonyms: atomise, atomize, nuke
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    type of:
    bomb, bombard
    throw bombs at or attack with bombs
  4. verb
    kill with or as if with a burst of gunfire or electric current or as if by shooting
    synonyms: vaporize
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    type of:
    cause to die; put to death, usually intentionally or knowingly
  5. verb
    cook or heat in a microwave oven
    synonyms: micro-cook, microwave, nuke
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    type of:
    transform and make suitable for consumption by heating
DISCLAIMER: These example sentences appear in various news sources and books to reflect the usage of the word ‘zap'. Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of or its editors. Send us feedback
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