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

But on the other, that made for a pretty homogeneous Hollywood of smooth hair and barrel waves, without tons of aspirational curls, kinks, and coils to look up to. Glamour, "17 Celebrities Who Gave Us Rare, Incredible Glimpses at Their Curls," 8 Aug. 2019 Regional breweries produce at least 15,000 barrels annually. Marc Bona, cleveland.com, "Platform Beer Co. timeline of events surrounding acquisition deal," 7 Aug. 2019 Local artists will paint kegs an whiskey barrels to be sold at a charity auction. Kathy Flanigan, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Craft breweries MobCraft, 1840 and Gathering Place celebrate anniversaries with 3 block parties," 5 Aug. 2019 Brent, the international oil standard, picked up $1.03, or 1.7%, to $62.96 per barrel. Amir Vahdat And David Rising, chicagotribune.com, "Iran denies Trump’s claim that U.S. shot down Iranian drone," 19 July 2019 In addition to the bull riding, the fans were entertained with a women’s barrel race competition in which riders darted out of the chute gates on horseback in a race against time on a course through barrels in the arena. Gene Nardi, sun-sentinel.com, "Bull Bash rounds up pro and amateur riders for summer rodeo competition," 12 July 2019 Breweries can now to serve up to 5,000 barrels a year in taprooms. Scott Dance, baltimoresun.com, "Among new Maryland laws effective Monday: Help for parents paying thousands of dollars for child care," 1 July 2019 When they were found inside the barrels in a forest, authorities said the remains of the four were too decomposed to be identified. Fox News, "Authorities identify 3 bodies linked to suspected killer," 7 June 2019 By law, for example, when oil costs more than $40 per barrel, taxes generated on all revenue above that level must be saved in sovereign wealth funds, rather than spent on, say, teacher salaries or the army. Ivan Nechepurenko, New York Times, "Putin Aims to Revive the Economy With a Plan. And Pianos.," 5 June 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

In the 1971 World Series, Johnson tried to barrel over Manny Sanguillen, but the Pittsburgh Pirates catcher held on to the ball. Tom Orsborn, ExpressNews.com, "San Antonio well represented at memorable ’70 All-Star Game," 8 July 2019 One barreled through Baton Rouge flipping cars, toppling trees and shredding the roof off an apartment complex. Mireya Villarreal, CBS News, "More rain could hit Louisiana after flooding turns deadly," 6 June 2019 As thunderstorms barreled across the state Monday evening, the terminal at Tweed-New Haven Airport began to flood, leading airport staff to cancel flights for nearly 24 hours. Emily Brindley, courant.com, "Tweed-New Haven Airport cancels flights after terminal flooding," 23 July 2019 Investigators said Elmezayen intentionally barreled his Honda vehicle off the edge of commercial fishing dock in San Pedro with his partner and two children inside the vehicle. CBS News, "Dad who drove kids with autism off L.A. pier charged with murder," 18 July 2019 The Taylor family began barreling the new bourbon in March of 2015. Ben Tobin, The Courier-Journal, "Kentucky distillery’s first bourbon in 102 years sells out in less than a day," 1 July 2019 There’s a lot of guys barreling baseballs up and down the lineup. San Diego Union-Tribune, "Padres notes: Offense not so offensive lately," 21 June 2019 The California and Texas projects would send trains barreling down the tracks at 200 mph or more, but with their completion in the distance, the more immediate beneficiaries of the FRA rule may be the country’s slower railroads. Jo Craven Mcginty, WSJ, "Will New Train Guidelines Improve Speeds? Not So Fast," 11 Jan. 2019 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

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

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