Definitions for RIFLEˈraɪ fəl

This page provides all possible meanings and translations of the word RIFLE

Random House Webster's College Dictionary

ri•fleˈraɪ fəl(n.; v.)-fled, -fling.

  1. (n.)a shoulder firearm with a rifled bore.

  2. a rifled cannon .

  3. rifles, a military unit equipped with rifles.

  4. (v.t.)to cut spiral grooves within (a gun barrel, pipe, etc.).

  5. to propel (a ball) at high speed.

Origin of rifle:

1745–55; < LG rīfeln to groove, der. of rīve, riefe groove, furrow; akin to OE rifelede wrinkled

ri•fleˈraɪ fəl(v.t.)-fled, -fling.

  1. to ransack and rob.

  2. to steal and take away.

Origin of rifle:

1325–75; ME < OF rifler to scratch, strip, plunder, prob. < Gmc; cf. OHG riffilōn to tear


Princeton's WordNet

  1. rifle(verb)

    a shoulder firearm with a long barrel and a rifled bore

    "he lifted the rifle to his shoulder and fired"

  2. plunder, despoil, loot, reave, strip, rifle, ransack, pillage, foray(verb)

    steal goods; take as spoils

    "During the earthquake people looted the stores that were deserted by their owners"

  3. rifle, go(verb)

    go through in search of something; search through someone's belongings in an unauthorized way

    "Who rifled through my desk drawers?"

Kernerman English Learner's Dictionary

  1. rifle(noun)ˈraɪ fəl

    a long gun

    a hunting rifle


  1. rifle(Noun)

    A long firearm firing a single projectile, usually with a rifled barrel to improve accuracy.

  2. rifle(Verb)

    to search with intent to steal; to ransack, pillage or plunder.

  3. rifle(Verb)

    To scan many items (especially papers) in a set, quickly. (See also riffle)

    She made a mess when she rifled through the stack of papers, looking for the title document.

  4. rifle(Verb)

    To add a spiral to the interior of a gun bore to make a fired bullet spin in flight to improve range and accuracy.

  5. rifle(Verb)

    To strike something with great power.

  6. Origin: from rifler, from Old Low Franconian *riffilōn (compare obsolete rijffelen 'to scrape', geriflian, riffeln, riffilōn), frequentative of rīfanan (compare rifa). More at rive.

Webster Dictionary

  1. Rifle(verb)

    to seize and bear away by force; to snatch away; to carry off

  2. Rifle(verb)

    to strip; to rob; to pillage

  3. Rifle(verb)

    to raffle

  4. Rifle(verb)

    to raffle

  5. Rifle(verb)

    to commit robbery

  6. Rifle(noun)

    a gun, the inside of whose barrel is grooved with spiral channels, thus giving the ball a rotary motion and insuring greater accuracy of fire. As a military firearm it has superseded the musket

  7. Rifle(noun)

    a body of soldiers armed with rifles

  8. Rifle(noun)

    a strip of wood covered with emery or a similar material, used for sharpening scythes

  9. Rifle(verb)

    to grove; to channel; especially, to groove internally with spiral channels; as, to rifle a gun barrel or a cannon

  10. Rifle(verb)

    to whet with a rifle. See Rifle, n., 3


  1. Rifle

    A rifle is a firearm designed to be fired from the shoulder, with a barrel that has a helical groove or pattern of grooves cut into the barrel walls. The raised areas of the rifling are called "lands," which make contact with the projectile, imparting spin around an axis corresponding to the orientation of the weapon. When the projectile leaves the barrel, this spin lends gyroscopic stability to the projectile and prevents tumbling, in the same way that a properly thrown American football or rugby ball behaves. This allows the use of aerodynamically-efficient pointed bullets and thus improves range and accuracy. The word "rifle" originally referred to the grooving, and a rifle was called a "rifled gun." Rifles are used in warfare, hunting and shooting sports. Typically, a bullet is propelled by the contained deflagration of an explosive compound, although other means such as compressed air are used in air rifles, which are popular for vermin control, hunting small game, formal target shooting and casual shooting.

British National Corpus

  1. Nouns Frequency

    Rank popularity for the word 'RIFLE' in Nouns Frequency: #2927

Anagrams of RIFLE

  1. filer

  2. flier

  3. lifer

Translations for RIFLE

Kernerman English Multilingual Dictionary


to search (through something)

The thief rifled through the drawers.

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