Definitions for rainbowˈreɪnˌboʊ

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

Random House Webster's College Dictionary


  1. a bow or arc of prismatic colors in the heavens opposite the sun; caused by the refraction and reflection of the sun's rays in drops of rain.

    Category: Meteorology

  2. a similar bow of colors, esp. one in the spray of a waterfall or fountain.

  3. any brightly multicolored arrangement or display.

  4. a wide variety or range; gamut.

  5. a visionary goal.

    Category: Common Vocabulary

  6. (adj.)of many colors; multicolored.

  7. made up of diverse races, groups, etc.:

    a rainbow coalition.

    Category: Common Vocabulary, Government

Origin of rainbow:

bef. 1000

Princeton's WordNet

  1. rainbow(noun)

    an arc of colored light in the sky caused by refraction of the sun's rays by rain

  2. rainbow(noun)

    an illusory hope

    "chasing rainbows"

Kernerman English Learner's Dictionary

  1. rainbow(noun)ˈreɪnˌboʊ

    an arch of colors in the sky


  1. rainbow(Noun)

    A multicoloured arch in the sky, produced by prismatic refraction of light within droplets of rain in the air.

  2. rainbow(Noun)

    Any prismatic refraction of light showing a spectrum of colours.

  3. rainbow(Noun)

    A wide assortment; a varied multitude.

    a rainbow of possibilities

  4. rainbow(Noun)

    An illusion, mirage

    Many electoral promises are rainbows, vanishing soon after poll day.

  5. rainbow(Noun)

    A curveball, particularly a slow one

  6. rainbow(Noun)

    In Texas hold 'em or Omaha hold 'em, a flop that contains three different suits

  7. rainbow(Verb)

    To pattern with many colours, like a rainbow.

  8. rainbow(Adjective)


  9. rainbow(Adjective)

    Made up of several races or ethnicities, or (more broadly) of several cultural or ideological factions.

  10. rainbow(Adjective)


  11. rainbow(Adjective)

    Composed entirely of different suits.

  12. Origin: From regnboga, formed as regn + boga. Cognate with Old High German reginbogo, Icelandic regnbogi and Old Norse regnbogi.

Webster Dictionary

  1. Rainbow(noun)

    a bow or arch exhibiting, in concentric bands, the several colors of the spectrum, and formed in the part of the hemisphere opposite to the sun by the refraction and reflection of the sun's rays in drops of falling rain


  1. Rainbow

    A rainbow is an optical and meteorological phenomenon that is caused by reflection of light in water droplets in the Earth's atmosphere, resulting in a spectrum of light appearing in the sky. It takes the form of a multicoloured arc. Rainbows caused by sunlight always appear in the section of sky directly opposite the sun. In a "primary rainbow", the arc shows red on the outer part and violet on the inner side. This rainbow is caused by light being refracted while entering a droplet of water, then reflected inside on the back of the droplet and refracted again when leaving it. In a double rainbow, a second arc is seen outside the primary arc, and has the order of its colours reversed, red facing toward the other one, in both rainbows. This second rainbow is caused by light reflecting twice inside water droplets.

British National Corpus

  1. Nouns Frequency

    Rank popularity for the word 'rainbow' in Nouns Frequency: #2953

Translations for rainbow

Kernerman English Multilingual Dictionary


the coloured arch sometimes seen in the sky opposite the sun when rain is falling.

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