rapid

adjective
rap·​id | \ ˈra-pəd How to pronounce rapid (audio) \

Definition of rapid

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: marked by a fast rate of motion, activity, succession, or occurrence

rapid

noun

Definition of rapid (Entry 2 of 2)

: a part of a river where the current is fast and the surface is usually broken by obstructions usually used in plural but singular or plural in construction

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Other Words from rapid

Adjective

rapidly adverb
rapidness noun

Choose the Right Synonym for rapid

Adjective

fast, rapid, swift, fleet, quick, speedy, hasty, expeditious mean moving, proceeding, or acting with celerity. fast and rapid are very close in meaning, but fast applies particularly to the thing that moves fast horses and rapid to the movement itself. rapid current swift suggests great rapidity coupled with ease of movement. returned the ball with one swift stroke fleet adds the implication of lightness and nimbleness. fleet runners quick suggests promptness and the taking of little time. a quick wit speedy implies quickness of successful accomplishment speedy delivery of mail and may also suggest unusual velocity. hasty suggests hurry and precipitousness and often connotes carelessness. a hasty inspection expeditious suggests efficiency together with rapidity of accomplishment. the expeditious handling of an order

Examples of rapid in a Sentence

Adjective There's been rapid growth in the number of new businesses in the town. Scientists are concerned about the rapid disappearance of the island's coral reefs. She carefully guided the boat through the rapid water.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective According to researchers, brains tend to decompose quickly after death in a rapid process of autolysis, where enzymes break up the tissue. Fox News, "'Heslington brain' resisted rotting for 2,600 years — now scientists know why," 12 Jan. 2020 Still, no definite front-runner has emerged, and nominations morning could tip the scales anew in a rapid-paced awards season that, while not lacking for the usual battery of parties, screenings and Q&As, is more condensed than usual. Washington Post, "Oscar nominations are Monday morning: Here’s what to expect," 12 Jan. 2020 For some, life has become more convenient as companies like Amazon.com Inc. offer free next-day shipping and services such as Uber Eats promote rapid food delivery. Maxine Joselow, Scientific American, "Delivery Vehicles Increasingly Choke Cities with Pollution," 11 Jan. 2020 According to Google Maps, this crosswalk has a rapid flashing pedestrian beacon. oregonlive, "Girl, 11, struck and killed by driver in Corvallis," 10 Jan. 2020 But this is just the very minimum of effort needed to start the rapid sustainable transition. Spencer Neale, Washington Examiner, "‘A disgrace’: Greta Thunberg slams ‘older generations’ for inaction on climate change," 10 Jan. 2020 Sulfate salt deposits found near the upper Murray formation region have revealed a period in Mars’ history when a rapid evaporation of water occurred. Jennifer Leman, Popular Mechanics, "Water Is Disappearing from the Surface of Mars Like Crazy," 10 Jan. 2020 The American Cancer Society report also found rapid declines in melanoma death rates, up to 7 percent a year from 2013 to 2017 among adults, also attributable to new treatments. NBC News, "Cancer death rates are falling. Advances in lung cancer treatment are playing a major role.," 8 Jan. 2020 The drop is largely driven by progress against lung cancer, though the most rapid declines in the report occurred in melanoma. Brianna Abbott, WSJ, "U.S. Cancer Death Rate Drops by Largest Amount on Record," 8 Jan. 2020 Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Many parents have taken their children to the rapids and told them about how in 1918, a team of volunteers saved two sailors after their boat had lurched dangerously close to one of the waterfalls’ edges. Christina Goldbaum, New York Times, "Boat Stuck at Niagara Falls Moves for First Time Since 1918," 5 Nov. 2019 From whitewater rapids to rapidly growing riverfront parks and shopping districts, the Cuyahoga River is surging, boosting Cuyahoga Falls and the Merriman Valley. Steven Litt, cleveland.com, "Ceremony celebrates Cuyahoga River’s journey from shame to pride 50 years after fire on water," 22 June 2019 From red-rock temples to rushing rapids, hiking through the Grand Canyon is a lesson in millions of years of geological history. Robert Earle Howells, National Geographic, "Discover the Grand Canyon's less-trafficked trails," 12 June 2019 Other times, your tipsy little craft defies the odds and makes it through the rapids. Mary Carole Mccauley, baltimoresun.com, "In real life they were white men. This Baltimore play uses women, people of color to tell their story.," 13 Dec. 2019 The two men were marooned in the middle of the river's rapids after the scow got stuck on rocks in the stream. Doha Madani, NBC News, "Massive ship stranded on rocks for 101 years at Niagra Falls dislodged by severe storms," 3 Nov. 2019 Painter tarps, ladders and a movable scaffold create various effects — campsites, mountains, boats whooshing down roaring rapids. Los Angeles Times, "Review: ‘Men on Boats’ puts women at the helm of this thrill ride," 16 July 2019 Veer south to Scenic Byway 7 and head for the Buffalo National River to float easy rapids below its 500-foot-tall limestone bluffs. The Editors, Outside Online, "The Best Road Trips in North America," 10 June 2019 In 1918, a barge-like vessel broke free from its tugboat and got lodged in the shallow rapids above Niagara Falls. Brigit Katz, Smithsonian, "A Historic Boat, Stuck Above Niagara Falls Since 1918, Finally Breaks Free," 6 Nov. 2019

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

Adjective

1634, in the meaning defined above

Noun

1765, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for rapid

Adjective

Latin rapidus seizing, sweeping, rapid, from rapere to seize, sweep away; akin to Lithuanian aprėpti to embrace

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Time Traveler for rapid

Time Traveler

The first known use of rapid was in 1634

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Statistics for rapid

Last Updated

15 Jan 2020

Cite this Entry

“Rapid.” The Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster Inc., https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/rapid. Accessed 20 January 2020.

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More Definitions for rapid

rapid

adjective
How to pronounce rapid (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of rapid

: happening in a short amount of time : happening quickly
: having a fast rate
: moving quickly

rapid

adjective
rap·​id | \ ˈra-pəd How to pronounce rapid (audio) \

Kids Definition of rapid

: very fast a rapid current rapid progress

Other Words from rapid

rapidly adverb

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More from Merriam-Webster on rapid

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for rapid

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with rapid

Spanish Central: Translation of rapid

Nglish: Translation of rapid for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of rapid for Arabic Speakers

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