There are 2 main definitions of cop in English:


Syllabification: cop
Pronunciation: /käp


A police officer.
More example sentences
  • As of this morning, the area around the Japanese embassy is still heavily policed by regular cops and Armed Police with riot gear.
  • Sam had almost killed the cops for not having patrol cars all around.
  • It reminds me of how on a certain Illinois highway, the cops would park a patrol car in a visible area on the side of the road.

verb (cops, copping, copped)

[with object] Back to top  
1Catch or arrest (an offender): he was copped for speeding
More example sentences
  • If they get caught and copped, if they get nicked and weighed-off, fair enough.
1.1Incur (something unwelcome): the team’s captain copped most of the blame
More example sentences
  • Convict captain Ricky Ponting copped one through the visor of his helmet that laid his cheek open.
  • His leader Don Bash copped a broadside from one respondent who described him as ‘a wimp.’
  • The English media thinks they're team's copping a raw deal from the Australian media this week.
1.2US Obtain (an illegal drug): he copped some hash for me
More example sentences
  • I really wanted to get high because I was very really stressed out, and something about having the Feds sit outside my apartment kept me from copping any drugs.
  • After copping, they may then not be able to obtain new syringes because local pharmacies and needle exchange services may be closed or far away.
  • Social Security checks, welfare checks, and food stamp pickups (food stamp trading for drugs and other items) change street activities and copping frequency.
1.3Steal: he watched her cop a pair of earrings and then nabbed her at the door
More example sentences
  • They finally figure a way to cop his coins and they leave LWM to get arrested for digging a hole in the ground.
1.4Receive or attain (something welcome): she copped an award for her role in the film
More example sentences
  • He copped several A-level awards, including best all round student.
  • New Park's players copped the other awards.
  • He copped the award for the Most Outstanding Academic Performance, while Jeremiah Bishop received the Principal's Spirit Award.
2North American Strike (an attitude or pose): I copped an attitude—I acted real tough
More example sentences
  • They get paid millions to cop an attitude and are allowed to fail to deliver the goods on the field, court, or what have you.
  • Don't like it when someone else cops the attitude you usually reserve for yourself?
  • ‘It's pretty easy,’ April says, copping an easy-going attitude and ruining any hopes of juicy controversy.


early 18th century (as a verb): perhaps from obsolete cap 'arrest', from Old French caper 'seize', from Latin capere. The noun is from copper2.


cop a feel

Fondle someone sexually, especially in a surreptitious way or without their permission.
More example sentences
  • You wouldn't believe how many guys try to cop a feel, or jump on stage and try to molest me.
  • ‘What a get up,’ he added, copping a feel of Lynn's well outlined derrière.
  • Morris copped a feel again this afternoon, shoved his hand right down my uniform.

cop hold of

[usually in imperative] British Take hold of: cop hold of the suitcase, I’m off
More example sentences
  • ‘Well, aren't you in for a surprise then, here cop hold of this’, and I handed him a mug of ‘coffee’ liberally laced with what the girl had given me.
  • Dad sprung from his chair like greased lightning, copped hold of the impudent young whippersnapper and bent him over his knee for a ceremonial thrashing.
  • Don't get me wrong, there's some pretty stirring stuff - much like we'd have from Mars Volta if they ever copped hold of a bunch of Coldplay records - but what the rich, fluid tones gain in consistency, they lose in relief.

cop a plea

North American Engage in plea bargaining.
More example sentences
  • When common criminals are allowed to cop a plea, they plead guilty first as part of the bargain.
  • Until today that is, when he copped a plea in U.S. District Court in Concord.
  • You can defend yourself against an indictment or you can cop a plea.

good cop, bad cop

Used to refer to a police interrogation technique in which one officer feigns a sympathetic or protective attitude while another adopts an aggressive approach: they’ll bring you into the station and play good cop, bad cop with you figurative a Jekyll and Hyde CEO is good cop, bad cop rolled into one expensive suit
More example sentences
  • Viewed from Tehran, the west is playing a classic game of good cop, bad cop.
  • The reaction of England management was interesting, almost on the lines of good cop, bad cop.
  • The translator should not be used in a "good cop, bad cop" role.

it's a fair cop

see fair1.

Phrasal verbs

cop out

Avoid doing something that one ought to do: he copped out at the last moment
More example sentences
  • Ultimately, the plot cops out and an easy solution is pasted on to avoid confusion.
  • Rather than face criticism, Fisk cops out by vilifying his critics as ‘haters’ who indulge in right-wing demagoguery.
  • And, without giving anything away, Lucas totally cops out of the one truly disturbing moment the movie could have had.

cop to

US Accept or admit to: there are a lot of people who don’t cop to their past
More example sentences
  • She has the tone of a recovering alcoholic copping to past bad behavior.
  • Okay, so what he is basically copping to is a complete abdication of his Congressional responsibilities, a failure to uphold his oath, and a seeming lack of knowledge regarding our Constitution.
  • But she always finds others to castigate for their immorality and selfishness, rarely copping to what she would call a decadent lifestyle if another woman lived it.

Definition of cop in:

There are 2 main definitions of cop in English:


Syllabification: cop
Pronunciation: /käp


A conical or cylindrical roll of thread wound onto a spindle.


late 18th century: possibly from Old English cop 'summit, top'.

Definition of cop in: