\ˈrāv \
raved; raving

Definition of rave 

(Entry 1 of 2)

intransitive verb

1a : to talk irrationally in or as if in delirium

b : to speak out wildly

c : to talk with extreme enthusiasm raved about its beauty

2 : to move or advance violently : storm the iced gusts still rave and beat— John Keats

transitive verb

: to utter in madness or frenzy



Definition of rave (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : an act or instance of raving

2 : an extravagantly favorable criticism the play received the critics' raves

3 : a large overnight dance party featuring techno music and usually involving the taking of mind-altering drugs

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Synonyms & Antonyms for rave

Synonyms: Verb

bluster, fulminate, huff, rant, spout

Synonyms: Noun

acclamation, applause, cheer, cheering, ovation, plaudit(s), réclame

Antonyms: Noun

booing, hissing

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Examples of rave in a Sentence


“It's his best performance yet,” raved one movie critic. The guy on the corner was raving like a madman. The coach ranted and raved at the referee.


Her review of the movie was a rave. the books have received even more raves from parents than from the kids they were written for
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Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

The company put on frequent performances at local schools and hospitals, always to rave reviews. Jordan Cutler-tietjen, sacbee, "After 30 years at helm, Sacramento Ballet artistic directors watch curtain close," 15 June 2018 Renewable-energy advocates rave about how cheap renewables have become. Justin Worland/pueblo, Time, "How One Industrial City Is Fighting to Go Green," 12 July 2018 Coach Hue Jackson also raved about Mayfield's leadership ability at the NFL Meetings last month. Mary Kay Cabot, cleveland.com, "Why I believe Baker Mayfield is the Browns' pick at 1 tonight: Mary Kay Cabot," 26 Apr. 2018 The next day, Johnson received a call from analyst Billy Packer, also raving about Brown, who was coaching the New Jersey Nets at the time. Blair Kerkhoff, kansascity, "From Naismith to Self: How eight coaches in 120 years of KU hoops got their jobs," 1 Feb. 2018 The brand relies on prickly pear — a succulent that’s said to have anti-inflammatory qualities — in all of its products, which is why Huxley devotees rave about the hydration benefits and general skin-soothing effects. The Editors, The Strategist, "Huxley (the Skin Care of Choice Among Korean Flight Attendants) Is 50 Percent Off," 27 June 2018 Fans of Jesus Lizard will appreciate the sense of raving menace in some of these songs. John Adamian, courant.com, "Kal Marks To Play MAC650," 19 May 2018 Like there was an all-night squirrel rave up there. Rasputin Todd, Cincinnati.com, "The diary of a broken man and his 'pet' raccoon," 11 May 2018 Remember Trent Harris, the Miami Hurricanes' sack leader everyone respected and raved about, the young man who saluted his older brother Troy, a paratrooper who served in Iraq, every time Harris pummeled the quarterback? Susan Miller Degnan, miamiherald, "Canes' patriotic sack leader got snubbed by the NFL combine. He now awaits the draft | Miami Herald," 24 Apr. 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Today's list is headlined by a trade-in deal for the new OnePlus 6T, which received a rave review from our Android guru Ron Amadeo earlier this week and became widely available on Thursday. Ars Staff, Ars Technica, "Dealmaster: Get $300 off the OnePlus 6T when you trade in an old phone," 1 Nov. 2018 As of October 28, Beauty Bakerie is available at Ulta, and the rave reviews are already pouring in. Maria Cassano, Allure, "Beauty Bakerie Is Now Sold at Ulta Stores," 31 Oct. 2018 Busy Philipps's brand-new memoir, This Will Only Hurt a Little, has earned rave reviews from countless friends and fans since its release earlier this month. Dan Barna, Glamour, "Busy Philipps Is 'Bummed' at How the Media Is Covering Her Story About James Franco," 19 Oct. 2018 Judge Kavanaugh has received rave reviews for his 12-year track record as a judge, including for his judicial temperament. Stavros Agorakis, Vox, "Read the full transcript of Sen. Collins’s speech announcing she’ll vote to confirm Brett Kavanaugh," 5 Oct. 2018 That's why these $23 sheets on Amazon have racked up such rave reviews. Caroline Picard, Good Housekeeping, "People Are Raving That Prime Bedding's Deep Pocket Fitted Sheets Never Come Untucked," 2 Oct. 2018 The movie has already garnered rave reviews, and Mother Monster received a standing ovation during yesterday's festival appearance. Isabel Greenberg, Harper's BAZAAR, "Lady Gaga Wears a Veiled Dress at the Toronto Film Festival Red Carpet," 10 Sep. 2018 The announcement also comes on the heels of another early aughts teen film staple, Mean Girls, getting a musical adaptation that has earned rave reviews — a good sign, indeed. Devon Elizabeth, Teen Vogue, ""The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants" Will Soon Be a Musical," 18 July 2018 Jeremy Scott, for example, used coral lipstick in his rave-like show earlier this week. Sarah Spellings, The Cut, "This Show’s Male Models Wore Kardashian-Level Contouring," 12 Feb. 2018

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


14th century, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense 1a


1765, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for rave


Middle English

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Statistics for rave

Last Updated

17 Nov 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for rave

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

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More Definitions for rave



English Language Learners Definition of rave

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: to talk or write about someone or something in an excited or enthusiastic way

: to talk loudly in an angry or wild way



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

: a statement of enthusiastic praise or approval

: a large party that lasts all night in which people dance to electronic dance music


\ˈrāv \
raved; raving

Kids Definition of rave

1 : to talk wildly or as if crazy They … raved and ranted until they were on the verge of blows …— Norton Juster, The Phantom Tollbooth

2 : to talk with great enthusiasm He raved about the new play.

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Comments on rave

What made you want to look up rave? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


a private place of worship

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