rabbit

noun, often attributive
rab·bit | \ˈra-bət \
plural rabbit or rabbits

Definition of rabbit 

(Entry 1 of 2)

1 : any of a family (Leporidae) of long-eared short-tailed lagomorph mammals with long hind legs:

a : any of various lagomorphs that are born furless, blind, and helpless, that are sometimes gregarious, and that include especially the cottontails of the New World and a small Old World mammal (Oryctolagus cuniculus) that is the source of various domestic breeds

b : hare

2 : the pelt of a rabbit

4a : a figure of a rabbit sped mechanically along the edge of a dog track as an object of pursuit

b : a runner in a long-distance race who sets a fast pace for the field in the first part of the race

rabbit

verb
rabbited; rabbiting; rabbits

Definition of rabbit (Entry 2 of 2)

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Other Words from rabbit

Noun

rabbity \ˈra-bə-tē \ adjective

Verb

rabbiter noun

Examples of rabbit in a Sentence

Noun

We keep rabbits as pets.

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

The species, too, include the abundant (gray squirrel and cottontail rabbit) to the seldom seen (fisher and gray fox). Paul A. Smith, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Smith: Snapshot Wisconsin trail cam project poised to go statewide," 6 July 2018 Skinned whole rabbits, limbs stretched taut as on a rack, eyes glassy. The Economist, "French vegans are tormenting France’s butchers," 5 July 2018 Whippets are a sighthound, originally bred for chasing down game such as rabbits, and their speed is explosive. Krista Stevens, Longreads, "Meet Spitty, the Whippet Who Holds Five World Records," 22 June 2018 Squirrels, rabbits, chipmunks, skunks, deer, many species of birds and more all breed and raise their young weeks prior to the solstice. Dave Epstein, BostonGlobe.com, "It’s official: Summer has begun," 21 June 2018 Whippets are a sighthound, originally bred for chasing down game such as rabbits, and their speed is explosive. Christopher Solomon, Outside Online, "This Whippet Is One of the World's Great Athletes," 18 June 2018 In testing on rabbits, unprotected individuals injected with cholera were all dead after 18 hours—but those that had received the HaitiV vaccine 24 hours earlier were alive and well. Richard Conniff, Scientific American, "New Probiotic Cholera Vaccine Can Outrace the Infection’s Rapid Spread," 13 June 2018 An ant colony, a sloth, kangaroos, rabbits, lizards, pigs, crabs, wallabies and monkeys are among the critters American has been asked to transport. Bart Jansen, USA TODAY, "Smells, growls and disputes: AA urges DOT to allow only trained service dogs in airline cabins," 10 July 2018 In warmer months, there’s also a free petting zoo with native sheep, goats and rabbits, and pony rides on the herd of diminutive Gotlandsruss (20 kronor). Ingrid K. Williams, New York Times, "36 Hours in Gothenburg, Sweden," 10 May 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'rabbit.' 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 rabbit

Noun

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Verb

1846, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for rabbit

Noun

Middle English rabet, probably from Middle French dialect (Walloon) robett, from obsolete or dialect Dutch robbe, robbeken; probably akin to Middle Low German robbe seal, East Frisian rubben to scratch, rub — more at rub

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Phrases Related to rabbit

rabbit on

Statistics for rabbit

Last Updated

19 Oct 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for rabbit

The first known use of rabbit was in the 14th century

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More Definitions for rabbit

rabbit

noun

English Language Learners Definition of rabbit

: a small animal that usually lives in holes in the ground and has long ears, soft fur, and back legs that are longer than its front legs

: the fur or meat of a rabbit

rabbit

noun
rab·bit | \ˈra-bət \

Kids Definition of rabbit

: a short-tailed mammal that has soft fur and long ears and hind legs and digs burrows

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Comments on rabbit

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