barrel

noun
bar·​rel | \ ˈber-əl How to pronounce barrel (audio) , ˈba-rəl\

Definition of barrel

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a round bulging vessel of greater length than breadth that is usually made of staves bound with hoops and has flat ends of equal diameter
2a : the amount contained in a barrel especially : the amount (such as 31 gallons of fermented beverage or 42 gallons of petroleum) fixed for a certain commodity used as a unit of measure
b : a great quantity
3 : a drum or cylindrical part: such as
a : the discharging tube of a gun
b : the part of a fountain pen or of a pencil containing the ink or lead
c : a cylindrical or tapering housing containing the optical components of a photographic-lens system and the iris diaphragm
d : the fuel outlet from the carburetor on a gasoline engine
4 : the trunk of a quadruped
on the barrel
: asking for or granting no credit
over a barrel
: at a disadvantage : in an awkward position

barrel

verb
barreled or barrelled; barreling or barrelling

Definition of barrel (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

: to put or pack in a barrel

intransitive verb

: to move at a high speed or without hesitation

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Other Words from barrel

Noun

barreled \ ˈber-​əld How to pronounce barreled (audio) , ˈba-​rəld \ adjective

Examples of barrel in a Sentence

Noun

Oak barrels are used for aging the wine. The price of oil is over 30 dollars a barrel. They drank a whole barrel of beer. the barrel of a gun

Verb

The truck went barreling down Main Street. She came running out of her office and went barreling past us down the hall.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Brent crude, the global gauge of prices, climbed 0.3% to $66.72 a barrel on London’s Intercontinental Exchange. Amrith Ramkumar, WSJ, "Tropical Storm Barry Helps Spark Fuel-Price Rebound," 12 July 2019 Benchmark crude oil rose 1 cent to settle at $60.21 a barrel in New York. Washington Post, "Stocks climb to records on hopes for lower interest rates," 12 July 2019 Minnesota breweries that make more than 20,000 barrels of beer annually aren’t allowed to sell off-sale products, such as growlers and crowlers, out of their taprooms. Kelly Busche / Forum News Service, Twin Cities, "MN law forcing Castle Danger to halt growler sales. Other breweries will have to follow.," 9 July 2019 The company has not said how many bottles of whiskey were lost, but reports estimate the company can make between 150 and 210 standard-sized bottles per barrel. Olivia Rockeman / Bloomberg, Time, "40,000 Barrels of Bourbon Destroyed in Jim Beam Warehouse Fire," 3 July 2019 Starting this week, breweries in Maryland can serve up to 5,000 barrels a year in its many taprooms. Chris Kaltenbach, baltimoresun.com, "Survey suggests there's room for more craft beers in Maryland," 3 July 2019 Prices of Brent crude oil, the international standard, jumped 4% to over $62 a barrel on the news. CBS News, "Oil prices spike after apparent tanker attack in Gulf of Oman," 13 June 2019 At the same time, returns from producing gasoline surged from a loss of $2 a barrel in late-January to a profit of more than $7 in March. Serene Cheong, Bloomberg.com, "Oil Price Benchmarks Are Defying the Laws of Supply and Demand," 4 Apr. 2019 The price of Brent crude, the international benchmark, was around $75 a barrel, and has been little changed over the course of the week, because traders expected a deal. Stanley Reed, New York Times, "OPEC, After Bolstering Prices, Considers Ramping Up Oil Production," 22 June 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

From single mom to 3 life prison sentences Metz grew up the youngest of nine children in a city barreling toward chaos. Casey Parks, USA Today, "'You don't know what you did for me': Released from prison by Obama, now on the dean's list," 8 July 2019 Green feasted barrelling downhill on the 4-on-3, tossing lob after lob in the Warriors’ sweep. Michael Shapiro, SI.com, "Can the Splash Brothers Pull Off One More Oracle Classic?," 13 June 2019 The staff watched him slip and fall and quickly slide upside down with his head barreling towards a rock. Scott Yorko, Popular Mechanics, "Back to Alaska: How a Legendary Glacier Adventure Almost Died When the World Needed It Most," 12 Sep. 2018 The officer heard a crash and saw the Subaru barreling toward him, scraping against the sides of the pedestrian walkway, according to the affidavit. oregonlive.com, "Woman accused of fleeing police in stolen Subaru, crashing into box truck pleads not guilty to 24 charges," 12 June 2019 In Pendleton, a tornado barreled through the Madison County town on Memorial Day, damaging homes and downing power lines. Crystal Hill, Indianapolis Star, "Yes, more rain is on the way. Here's why it's been raining so much in Central Indiana.," 5 June 2019 The Taylor family began barreling in March of 2015. Benjamin Tobin, The Courier-Journal, "Kentucky Peerless Distilling Company set to release its first bourbon in 102 years," 11 June 2019 The Wright State right fielder is ready to barrel up some balls. Scott Springer, Cincinnati.com, "Greater Cincinnati product taken in third round of MLB Draft by Florida Marlins," 4 June 2019 The rest of the colony, still barreling along at 12 centimeters per second, comes trampling over its back. Quanta Magazine, "The Simple Algorithm That Ants Use to Build Bridges," 26 Feb. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'barrel.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of barrel

Noun

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Verb

15th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense

History and Etymology for barrel

Noun

Middle English barayl, barel, borrowed from Anglo-French barel, baril (continental Old French barril), going back to Gallo-Romance *barrīculus, probably diminutive of *barrīca "cask, barrel" — more at barricade entry 2

Verb

verbal derivative of barrel entry 1

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More Definitions for barrel

barrel

noun

English Language Learners Definition of barrel

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a round usually wooden container with curved sides and flat ends
: the amount of something in a barrel
: the part of a gun that the bullets go through when the gun is fired

barrel

verb

English Language Learners Definition of barrel (Entry 2 of 2)

US, informal : to move very fast and often in an uncontrolled or dangerous way

barrel

noun
bar·​rel | \ ˈber-əl How to pronounce barrel (audio) \

Kids Definition of barrel

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a round container often with curved sides that is longer than it is wide and has flat ends
2 : the amount contained in a full barrel a barrel of water
3 : something shaped like a cylinder the barrel of a gun

barrel

verb
barreled or barrelled; barreling or barrelling

Kids Definition of barrel (Entry 2 of 2)

: to move at a high speed

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More from Merriam-Webster on barrel

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with barrel

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for barrel

Spanish Central: Translation of barrel

Nglish: Translation of barrel for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of barrel for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about barrel

Comments on barrel

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