adjective rap·id \ˈra-pəd\

: happening in a short amount of time : happening quickly

: having a fast rate

: moving quickly

Full Definition of RAPID

:  marked by a fast rate of motion, activity, succession, or occurrence
rap·id·ly adverb
rap·id·ness noun

Examples of RAPID

  1. There's been rapid growth in the number of new businesses in the town.
  2. Scientists are concerned about the rapid disappearance of the island's coral reefs.
  3. She carefully guided the boat through the rapid water.

Origin of RAPID

Latin rapidus seizing, sweeping, rapid, from rapere to seize, sweep away; akin to Lithuanian aprėpti to embrace
First Known Use: 1634

Synonym Discussion of RAPID

fast, rapid, swift, fleet, quick, speedy, hasty, expeditious mean moving, proceeding, or acting with celerity. fast and rapid are very close in meaning, but fast applies particularly to the thing that moves <fast horses> and rapid to the movement itself <rapid current>. swift suggests great rapidity coupled with ease of movement <returned the ball with one swift stroke>. fleet adds the implication of lightness and nimbleness <fleet runners>. quick suggests promptness and the taking of little time <a quick wit>. speedy implies quickness of successful accomplishment <speedy delivery of mail> and may also suggest unusual velocity. hasty suggests hurry and precipitousness and often connotes carelessness <a hasty inspection>. expeditious suggests efficiency together with rapidity of accomplishment <the expeditious handling of an order>.

Rhymes with RAPID



Definition of RAPID

:  a part of a river where the current is fast and the surface is usually broken by obstructions —usually used in plural but singular or plural in construction

First Known Use of RAPID

RAPIDLY Defined for Kids


adjective rap·id \ˈra-pəd\

Definition of RAPID for Kids

:  very fast <a rapid current> <rapid progress>
rap·id·ly adverb


Next Word in the Dictionary: rapidamentePrevious Word in the Dictionary: RaphusAll Words Near: rapid
How to use a word that (literally) drives some people nuts.
Test your vocab with our fun, fast game
Ailurophobia, and 9 other unusual fears