\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)

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 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 Now in its 19th season, Coachella style has existed for years as some combination of flower crowns, itty-bitty jean shorts, and colorful crop tops — a shameless millennial take on Woodstock and rave culture. Emilia Petrarca, The Cut, "Why Hasn’t Calabasas Casual Made Its Way to Coachella?," 16 Apr. 2018 There was a moment last week Lawrence Cager made a play so spectacular that days later, Hurricanes coach Mark Richt was still raving. Christy Cabrera Chirinos, Sun-Sentinel.com, "Hurricanes receivers look to continue stepping up as first spring scrimmage looms," 3 Apr. 2018 Other residents have raved about the classes' beneficial effects on their sleep quality and ability to calm themselves when facing their abusers in court. Woman's Day Staff, Woman's Day, "This Yoga Program Helps Victims of Domestic Violence Heal," 5 July 2018 After identifying the raving racist who threatened to call Immigration and Customs Enforcement on Spanish speakers at a New York City deli, the internet is clapping back in the most delicious, delightful way. Anne Branigin, The Root, "Racist Man Who Threatened to Call ICE on Spanish Speakers to Be Besieged by Mariachis and Tacos, Thanks to the Internet," 17 May 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

The superstar quickly became the center of a trending internet meme (not to mention countless rave reviews) as adoring Beyhive loyals everywhere mused over the mere science behind the beauty switch-up. Jenna Rennert, Vogue, "The Internet Reacts to Beyoncé's Alleged Nail Polish Change at Coachella—Here's What We Know," 16 Apr. 2018 And in a franchise that was never exactly known for drawing rave reviews, Jason Takes Manhattan remains, to this day, the most critically-reviled Friday the 13th movie ever. Scott Meslow, GQ, "Friday the 13th," 13 Apr. 2018 Thanks to the rave reviews and general buzz this movie is generating, Love, Simon has the opportunity to have a long, profitable future in theaters. Stephen Daw, Billboard, "'Love, Simon' & The Sociopolitical Importance of Your Dollar: Op-Ed," 20 Mar. 2018 How a rave review could have given way to withering condemnation in such a short span has fueled conspiracy theories involving Gov. Matt Bevin, board of trustees Chairman J. David Grissom and Postel’s own temporary position and lack of tenure. Tim Sullivan, The Courier-Journal, "Louisville's law firm hired a private detective to investigate ex-Louisville AD Tom Jurich," 29 Jan. 2018 The styles are very different, and Texas has developed and incredible craft style barbecue and that’s what the rave is right now. Kaila Contreras, Houston Chronicle, "Kingwood resident to appear on Food Network’s “Chopped Grill Masters” next month," 13 July 2018 Image Meditation and ritual meet the tools of the electronic rave in Aisha Devi’s songs. Jon Pareles, New York Times, "At Moogfest, Electronics Stimulate Ears and Emotions," 21 May 2018 Video of the rave spread internationally on social media, especially in the former Soviet Union. The Economist, "Young Georgians fight for their right to party," 17 May 2018 Authorities also seized a sound system before the rave had the chance to get started. Cydney Henderson, azcentral, "Five people arrested after turning an abandoned Toys R Us into a massive rave," 12 Apr. 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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Dictionary Entries near rave








Phrases Related to rave

rave review

stark raving mad

Statistics for rave

Last Updated

20 Oct 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).


to reject or criticize sharply

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