Quantcast
Merriam-Webster Logo
  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
  • Scrabble
  • Spanish Central
  • Learner's Dictionary
1

rear

play
verb \ˈrir, vt4 & vi2 are also ˈrer\

Simple Definition of rear

  • : to take care of (a young person or animal)

  • of an animal : to rise up on the back legs with the front legs in the air

  • : to rise high in the air

Source: Merriam-Webster's Learner's Dictionary

Full Definition of rear

  1. transitive verb
  2. 1 :  to erect by building :  construct

  3. 2 :  to raise upright

  4. 3 a (1) :  to breed and raise (an animal) for use or market (2) :  to bring to maturity or self-sufficiency usually through nurturing care <reared five children> <birds rearing their young> b :  to cause (as plants) to grow

  5. 4 :  to cause (a horse) to rise up on the hind legs

  6. intransitive verb
  7. 1 :  to rise high

  8. 2 of a horse :  to rise up on the hind legs

rearer

noun

Examples of rear in a sentence

  1. <watched a documentary on how wolves rear their young>

  2. <it took all the men in the village to rear the frame for the barn, pulling hard at the ropes until all the sides were standing>



Origin and Etymology of rear

Middle English reren, from Old English rǣran; akin to Old Norse reisa to raise, Old English rīsan to rise


First Known Use: before 12th century

Synonym Discussion of rear

lift, raise, rear, elevate, hoist, heave, boost mean to move from a lower to a higher place or position. lift usually implies exerting effort to overcome resistance of weight <lift the chair while I vacuum>. raise carries a stronger implication of bringing up to the vertical or to a high position <scouts raising a flagpole>. rear may add an element of suddenness to raise <suddenly reared itself up on its hind legs>. elevate may replace lift or raise especially when exalting or enhancing is implied <elevated the taste of the public>. hoist implies lifting something heavy especially by mechanical means <hoisted the cargo on board>. heave implies lifting and throwing with great effort or strain <heaved the heavy crate inside>. boost suggests assisting to climb or advance by a push <boosted his brother over the fence>.

2

rear

play
noun \ˈrir\

Simple Definition of rear

  • : the part of something that is opposite to or away from the front part : the back part of something

  • : the part of your body that you sit on

Source: Merriam-Webster's Learner's Dictionary

Full Definition of rear

  1. 1 :  the back part of something: as a :  the unit (as of an army) or area farthest from the enemy b :  the part of something located opposite its front <the rear of a house> c :  buttocks

  2. 2 :  the space or position at the back <moved to the rear>

Examples of rear in a sentence

  1. There are two bedrooms at the rear.

  2. <the rear of the car was sleekly designed>



Origin and Etymology of rear

Middle English rere, short for rerewarde rearward


First Known Use: 14th century


3

rear

play
adjective \ˈrir\

Simple Definition of rear

  • : at or near the back of something

Source: Merriam-Webster's Learner's Dictionary

Full Definition of rear

  1. :  being at the back <the rear entrance>

Examples of rear in a sentence

  1. The car's rear bumper was damaged.

  2. <go to the back of the building and look out the rear window and you'll see the eagle>



Origin and Etymology of rear

Middle English rere-, from Anglo-French rere backward, behind, from Latin retro- — more at retro


First Known Use: 14th century


4

rear

play
adverb \ˈrir\

Definition of rear

  1. :  toward or from the rear —usually used in combination <a rear-driven car>



1855

First Known Use of rear

1855



REAR Defined for Kids

1

rear

play
verb \ˈrir\

Definition of rear for Students

reared

rearing

  1. 1 :  to rise up on the hind legs <The horse reared in fright.>

  2. 2 :  to bring up <They wanted to rear children in the country.>

  3. 3 :  to rise high

  4. 4 :  to take care of the breeding and raising of <rear cattle>




2

rear

play
noun

Definition of rear for Students

  1. 1 :  the space or position at the back <Go to the rear of the building.>

  2. 2 :  the part (as of an army) or area farthest from the enemy

  3. 3 :  the human buttocks




3

rear

play
adjective

Definition of rear for Students

  1. :  being at the back <a rear tire>





Seen and Heard

What made you want to look up rear? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).

WORD OF THE DAY

a representation of something

Get Word of the Day daily email!

WORD GAMES

Take a 3-minute break and test your skills!

confounded-person

Which is a synonym of indolent?

lazy philistine frenetic melancholy
Name That Thing

Test your visual vocabulary with our 10-question challenge!

TAKE THE QUIZ
SCRABBLE® Sprint

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ