rainbow

noun
rain·​bow | \ ˈrān-ˌbō How to pronounce rainbow (audio) \

Definition of rainbow

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : an arc or circle that exhibits in concentric bands the colors of the spectrum and that is formed opposite the sun by the refraction and reflection of the sun's rays in raindrops, spray, or mist
2a : a multicolored array
b : a wide assortment or range a rainbow of flavors
3 [ from the impossibility of reaching the rainbow, at whose foot a pot of gold is said to be buried ] : an illusory goal or hope

rainbow

adjective

Definition of rainbow (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : having many colors
2 : of, relating to, or being people of different races or cultural backgrounds a rainbow coalition

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Other Words from rainbow

Noun

rainbowlike \ ˈrān-​ˌbō-​ˌlīk How to pronounce rainbowlike (audio) \ adjective

Examples of rainbow in a Sentence

Adjective

the rainbow costumes worn by mummers at Mardi Gras

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Those plates might include shrimp and grits, and young rainbow carrots roasted with curry powder and served over Greek yogurt and honey. Carol Deptolla, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "New bar-restaurants Uncle Buck's and Red Star will take advantage of location next to Fiserv Forum beer garden," 9 July 2019 There is no shortage of greenery; rainbow eucalyptus trees surround the area and give off the illusion that guests are far from city life. Catie Wegman, sun-sentinel.com, "Picture perfect: 12 South Florida spots that are sure to make you Instagram famous," 9 July 2019 The cute cousins frolicked among a colorful sweets explosion, revealed a post on Poosh, wearing coordinating rainbow outfits and indulging in a variety of treats. Jen Juneau, PEOPLE.com, "Penelope Is 7! Kim Kardashian and Kris Jenner Wish Kourtney Kardashian's Daughter Happy Birthday," 8 July 2019 The diagonal rainbow stripe also fits in really well on a black background. SI.com, "50 Most Iconic Football Shirts of All Time," 7 July 2019 Speaking of Versace, Donatella was out and about with Lady Gaga in the streets of New York dressed in head-to-toe rainbow. Liana Satenstein, Vogue, "This Week on Fashion Instagram, Madonna Does Pride and Zendaya Glows," 6 July 2019 The meal included hotdogs, hamburgers, fruit cups, potato chips, salad, soft drinks and rainbow sherbet — enough to serve 1,000 if necessary. Kate Duffy, San Diego Union-Tribune, "Kate’s report: Father Joe’s celebrates July 4th with a barbeque for homeless," 5 July 2019 But this start wasn’t all rainbow curveballs and smiles. Shayna Rubin, The Mercury News, "Takeaways: A’s beat odds, beat Twins 8-6," 3 July 2019 Asos even has some of the rainbow ampersand tees from last year’s collection still in stock. Hilary George-parkin, Vox, "Rainbow Listerine and bottles of Bud Light: what happens to the merch when Pride is over," 2 July 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective

Instead of coming with add-on bumpers, like the previous Echo Dot Kids Edition, the new model is available in either frost blue or rainbow fabric colors. Dan Seifert, The Verge, "Amazon’s new Echo Dot Kids Edition comes in blue or rainbow colors," 12 June 2019 There’s Jane Fonda on the red carpet looking smoking in Valentino, and Céline Dion showing off her mile-long legs in Alexandre Vauthier, and Baddiewinkle on Instagram wearing unitards so violently rainbow-colored, Miley Cyrus might wince. Steff Yotka, Vogue, "In the Year of the Runway Zaddy, Where Are the MILFs?," 4 Feb. 2019 With that in mind, those with dark or rainbow hair most likely aren't the best suited for a mauve champagne hue. Devon Abelman, Allure, "Mauve Champagne Hair Is the Unexpected Way to Change Up Your Blonde for Fall," 24 Sep. 2018 The Harts did find a community that embraced their rainbow family. Lauren Smiley, Glamour, "Two White Moms. Six Black Kids. One Unthinkable Tragedy. A Look Inside the ‘Perfect’ Hart Family," 6 Sep. 2018 While rainbow jewelry is often dismissed as twee, these sparklers are all grown up. Hayley Phelan, New York Times, "How to Be a Poolside Pinup," 27 June 2018 Hundreds of people chanted slogans and waved rainbow flags on side streets along Istiklal Avenue, Istanbul’s main pedestrian thoroughfare. NBC News, "Turkish police disperse LGBTI activists holding banned march," 2 July 2018 Hundreds of people chanted slogans and waved rainbow flags on side streets along Istiklal Avenue, Istanbul's main pedestrian thoroughfare. Zeynep Bilginsoy, Fox News, "Turkish police disperse LGBTI activists holding banned march," 1 July 2018 More rainbow looks: Now check out this rainbow nail art: Follow Allure on Instagram and Twitter, or subscribe to our newsletter for daily beauty stories delivered right to your inbox. Melissa Minton, Allure, "Cardi B Debuts Rainbow Wig and Matching Heels in a New Instagram Celebrating Her Pregnancy," 7 June 2018

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

Noun

before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Adjective

1637, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Statistics for rainbow

Last Updated

12 Jul 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for rainbow

The first known use of rainbow was before the 12th century

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More Definitions for rainbow

rainbow

noun

English Language Learners Definition of rainbow

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a curved line of different colors that sometimes appears in the sky when the sun shines through rain

rainbow

adjective

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

: of, relating to, or including people of different races, cultures, etc.

rainbow

noun
rain·​bow | \ ˈrān-ˌbō How to pronounce rainbow (audio) \

Kids Definition of rainbow

: an arc of colors that appears in the sky opposite the sun and is caused by the sun shining through rain, mist, or spray

rainbow

noun
rain·​bow | \ ˈrān-ˌbō How to pronounce rainbow (audio) \

Medical Definition of rainbow

slang
: a combination of the sodium derivatives of amobarbital and secobarbital in a blue and red capsule

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Comments on rainbow

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appealing forcibly to the mind or reason

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