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noun \ˈräd\

Simple Definition of rod

  • : a straight, thin stick or bar

  • : a pole with a line and usually a reel that is used in fishing

  • : a stick used to hit or whip someone as a form of punishment

Source: Merriam-Webster's Learner's Dictionary

Full Definition of rod

  1. 1 a (1) :  a straight slender stick growing on or cut from a tree or bush (2) :  osier (3) :  a stick or bundle of twigs used to punish; also :  punishment (4) :  a shepherd's cudgel (5) :  a pole with a line and usually a reel attached for fishing b (1) :  a slender bar (as of wood or metal) (2) :  a bar or staff for measuring (3) :  scepter; also :  a wand or staff carried as a badge of office (as of marshal)

  2. 2 a :  a unit of length — see weight table b :  a square rod

  3. 3 :  any of the long rod-shaped photosensitive receptors in the retina responsive to faint light — compare cone 3a

  4. 4 :  a rod-shaped bacterium

  5. 5 slang :  handgun

rodless play \-ləs\ adjective
rodlike play \-ˌlīk\ adjective

Examples of rod in a sentence

  1. <arrested for using a rod on his dogs in violation of the state's animal cruelty laws>

Origin of rod

Middle English, from Old English rodd; akin to Old Norse rudda club

First Known Use: before 12th century

Other Hunting and Fishing Terms

Rhymes with rod

ROD Defined for Kids


noun \ˈräd\

Definition of rod for Students

  1. 1 :  a light flexible pole often with line and a reel attached used in fishing

  2. 2 :  a stick or bundle of twigs used in whipping a person

  3. 3 :  a straight slender stick or bar

  4. 4 :  a measure of length equal to 1612 feet (about 5 meters)

  5. 5 :  a cell of the retina of the eye that is shaped like a rod and is sensitive to faint light

Medical Dictionary


noun \ˈräd\

Medical Definition of rod

  1. 1:  a straight slender pole or bar

  2. 2:  any of the long rod-shaped photosensitive receptors in the retina responsive to faint light—compare cone 2a

  3. 3:  a bacterium shaped like a rod

Seen and Heard

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to dishevel or rumple

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