noun, often attributive
rab·​bit | \ ˈra-bət How to pronounce rabbit (audio) \
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


rabbited; rabbiting; rabbits

Definition of rabbit (Entry 2 of 2)

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Other Words from rabbit


rabbity \ ˈra-​bə-​tē How to pronounce rabbit (audio) \ adjective


rabbiter noun

Examples of rabbit in a Sentence

Noun We keep rabbits as pets.
Recent Examples on the Web: Noun There was no more scoring in the ballgame, leading many to peg the rabbit as a good-luck charm. Bruce Jenkins, San Francisco Chronicle, "Giants' Rally Rabbit latest furry sidekick in Bay Area baseball. Here are the top 5," 23 Apr. 2021 The Fort Farce out of Sheridan ran an obituary for its company mascot, a pet rabbit named Ida Minnie, whose services were held at her owner’s tent, according to archives from the Center for Research Libraries. Morgan Greene, chicagotribune.com, "A century ago, a New Deal program left a lasting mark on Illinois and the country. Now, a Civilian Climate Corps could tackle joblessness and global warming.," 19 Apr. 2021 Since March of last year, government labs have confirmed cases of rabbit hemorrhagic disease across the West, with the epicenter in the Southwest and Southern California. Winston Gieseke, USA TODAY, "In California: Deadly virus in rabbits threatens to upend some Western ecosystems," 17 Apr. 2021 There's even a rabbit vibrator that adds anal into the mix for maximum erogenous-zone stimulation. Sophie Saint Thomas, Allure, "The Best Rabbit Vibrators to Buy Online, According to a Sex Writer," 16 Apr. 2021 Dorros is an avid gardener who uses the rabbit droppings for the compost that fertilizes her 20 fruit trees. Dakota Kim, Los Angeles Times, "How Angelenos are battling food insecurity by using hyperlocal apps to share their bounty," 15 Apr. 2021 April 15, 2021 Luka Magic this time required pulling a rabbit out of his sneaker, shorts, jersey, something. Dallas News, "LeBron James, Tyson Chandler others react to Luka Doncic’s ‘ridiculous’ game-winner in Mavs’ win over Grizzlies," 15 Apr. 2021 Darius has held the record for being the largest rabbit in the world for over 11 years after the Guinness Book of World Records gave him his title onApril 6, 2010. Jon Haworth, ABC News, "Guinness World Record's biggest rabbit stolen from home as police hunt for culprit," 13 Apr. 2021 Darius, a Continental Giant rabbit, disappeared from his enclosure in a backyard in the village of Stoulton over the weekend, the West Mercia Police force said. BostonGlobe.com, "Record-holding giant rabbit stolen in UK," 13 Apr. 2021 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb The hood and shoulders are reinforced with durable, water-repelling fabric, which comes in handy for late-season upland or rabbit hunts. Natalie Krebs, Outdoor Life, "The Ultimate Hunting Gift Guide for Women," 18 Nov. 2020 Writing for Citius Mag, former University of Oregon runner Daniel Winn explains how to effectively rabbit a race. oregonlive, "The UO men enter this week’s NCAA Indoor Championships ranked third: Oregon track & field rundown," 9 Mar. 2020 One study concludes that rising temperatures will drive the volcano rabbits higher into the mountains, perhaps by 2,300 feet over the next century, further shrinking their range. National Geographic, "Volcano rabbit," 23 Jan. 2020

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


14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1


1846, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for rabbit


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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Time Traveler for rabbit

Time Traveler

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

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Statistics for rabbit

Last Updated

30 Apr 2021

Cite this Entry

“Rabbit.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/rabbit. Accessed 7 May. 2021.

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More Definitions for rabbit



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


rab·​bit | \ ˈra-bət How to pronounce rabbit (audio) \

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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