rebel

adjective
reb·​el | \ ˈre-bəl How to pronounce rebel (audio) \

Definition of rebel

 (Entry 1 of 3)

1a : opposing or taking arms against a government or ruler
b : of or relating to rebels the rebel camp

rebel

noun

Definition of rebel (Entry 2 of 3)

: one who rebels or participates in a rebellion

rebel

verb
re·​bel | \ ri-ˈbel How to pronounce rebel (audio) \
rebelled; rebelling

Definition of rebel (Entry 3 of 3)

intransitive verb

1a : to oppose or disobey one in authority or control
b : to renounce and resist by force the authority of one's government
2a : to act in or show opposition or disobedience rebelled against the conventions of polite society
b : to feel or exhibit anger or revulsion rebelled at the injustice of life

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Examples of rebel in a Sentence

Adjective

today's rebel chefs feel free to ignore the dictates of classic French cuisine

Noun

The government captured six armed rebels. He was a rebel against the school administration. He is a typical teenage rebel.

Verb

When the government imposed more taxes, the people rebelled. The protesters are rebelling against the new tax law. Children often rebel against their parents.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective

On the rebel side, bodies of Houthi fighters were strewn across the front lines. Washington Post, "Fierce fighting intensifies outside Yemen’s Hodeida airport," 15 June 2018 On the rebel side, bodies of Houthi fighters were strewn across the front lines. Ahmed Al-haj, chicagotribune.com, "Fighting intensifies outside Yemen's Hodeida airport as death toll reaches 280," 15 June 2018 The White House intended the strike to deter Syrian President Bashar al-Assad from using chemical weapons after a suspected attack using sarin and chlorine gas killed dozens of people last week in the rebel stronghold of Douma, east of Damascus. Phil Mccausland /, NBC News, "Putin warns of global 'crisis' after U.S.-led strike on Syria," 15 Apr. 2018 Al-Houthi stressed the rebels’ commitment to implement agreements struck in Sweden last month, according to a rebel statement. Samy Magdy, The Seattle Times, "UN envoy arrives in Yemen after deadly weekend attack," 28 Jan. 2019 Trillanes who remained holed up in his office for three weeks now after President Rodrigo Duterte voided an amnesty given to the former rebel military officer, willingly went with police to post bail. Jim Gomez, Fox News, "Philippine president's fiercest critic arrested, posts bail," 25 Sep. 2018 The rebel Tories and Labour lawmakers appear to be sending signals to each other. Kitty Donaldson, Bloomberg.com, "Tory Brexit Rebels, Labour Edge Toward Common Front Against May," 6 June 2018 And there is no riskier asset than a rebel currency. Paul Vigna, WSJ, "Once a Rebel, Bitcoin Is Conforming to Mainstream Markets," 28 Dec. 2018 Unlike such millionaire checkpoints, more modest operations have allowed some rebel outfits to pay salaries, buy food and purchase weapons. Raja Abdulrahim, WSJ, "‘They’re All Thieves’: Navigating Syria’s Checkpoint Shakedowns," 23 Dec. 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

India's top court on Friday, Sept. 28, rejected pleas by five rights activists that they be freed a month after being arrested for alleged links to Maoist rebels. Fox News, "India's top court refuses to release 5 rights activists," 28 Sep. 2018 Senate Democrats filed a lawsuit to block Matt Whitaker from continuing on as acting attorney general; Houthi rebels will halt firing rockets in hopes of entering peace talks with Saudi Arabia. Stavros Agorakis, Vox, "Vox Sentences: The Whitaker saga continues," 20 Nov. 2018 Thomas Woewiyu, a top lieutenant to Liberian warlord Charles Taylor – was willing to pay top dollar for the firepower that would help his rebel army seize control of his West African nation’s government. Jeremy Roebuck, Philly.com, "How a Delco man sought to use stolen U.S. military weapons to wage war in Liberia," 28 June 2018 Many Burmese amber mines are controlled by rebel militias in open conflict with Myanmar's military. National Geographic, "Tick Wrapped in Spider Silk Found Trapped in Amber—A First," 25 May 2018 Black Lightning’s alter ego is Jefferson Pierce, a dynamic school principal and a concerned dad to two daughters, activist Anissa (Nafessa Williams, who will be at MegaCon) and student rebel Jennifer (China Anne McClain). Hal Boedeker, OrlandoSentinel.com, "'Black Lightning': Family, father define show," 23 May 2018 The vehicle was developed by Russia after the end of the Cold War, when the Russian Army sustained heavy tank and armored vehicle losses fighting Chechen rebels. Kyle Mizokami, Popular Mechanics, "China's 'Terminator' Tank Support Vehicle Is Bristling With Weaponry," 7 Nov. 2018 Encouraged by Russia's annexation of Crimea, which also came after Yanukovych's ouster, rebel leaders initially hoped their regions would be absorbed by Russia as well. Fox News, "Ukraine separatists report leader killed in cafe explosion," 31 Aug. 2018 Meanwhile, the United Nations special envoy for Yemen, Martin Griffiths, left Sanaa after three days of talks with rebel leaders. Time, "The Battle for Control of a Key Port City in Yemen Intensifies," 20 June 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

It’s unclear if these two cryptic guerrilla operations are connected or just coincidentally rebelling against the same awful systems. refinery29.com, "Everything We Know About Dietland's #MeToo Revenge Mystery," 5 June 2018 The series covered lots of ground, transporting audiences to the charming village of Sweetwater and the tantalizing action of border town Pariah before finally dropping us off at a black-tie event where the robots rebelled against wealthy guests. Ashley Hoffman, Time, "Here's Exactly Where Westworld Season 1 Left Off," 20 Apr. 2018 And as the new generation of dancers begin to rebel against the sacrificing of their bodies, the film slowly turns redder and redder. Aja Romano, Vox, "How Suspiria turns the color red into a plot point," 9 Nov. 2018 At first, the mother is delighted to be caring for another child, until the baby bao begins to rebel. Eliana Dockterman, Time, "The Story Behind Bao, the Adorable Short Before The Incredibles 2," 14 June 2018 Eventually, a critical mass of women rebelled against this regime as too dangerous and demeaning to be tolerated. Rickie Solinger, Vox, "This is what life was like for women in America before Roe v. Wade," 7 Sep. 2018 Congress is rebelling against Mr. Trump’s decision to declare a national emergency to build a border wall, though the President will win this battle with a veto. The Editorial Board, WSJ, "Trump vs. a Republican Senate," 1 Mar. 2019 Businessmen and others rebelled, very nearly impeaching the mayor and forcing him to launch a crackdown on suspected women prostitutes. Scott Stern, Teen Vogue, "How Capitalism Helped to Fuel the Mass Incarceration of Women," 25 June 2018 Congress rebelled, declining to endorse his suggested 30 percent cuts in the State Department’s budget. Peter Baker, BostonGlobe.com, "Rex Tillerson out as Trump’s secretary of state, replaced by Mike Pompeo," 13 Mar. 2018

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

Adjective

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

Noun

14th century, in the meaning defined above

Verb

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

History and Etymology for rebel

Adjective

Middle English, from Anglo-French, from Latin rebellis, from re- + bellum war, from Old Latin duellum

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Learn More about rebel

Dictionary Entries near rebel

rebec

rebegin

Rebekah

rebel

rebeldom

rebeller

rebellion

Statistics for rebel

Last Updated

25 Mar 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for rebel

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

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More Definitions for rebel

rebel

noun

English Language Learners Definition of rebel

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a person who opposes or fights against a government
: a person who opposes a person or group in authority : a person who does not obey rules or accept normal standards of behavior, dress, etc.

rebel

verb

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

: to oppose or fight against a government
: to oppose a person or group in authority : to refuse to obey rules or accept normal standards of behavior, dress, etc.

rebel

noun
reb·​el | \ ˈre-bəl How to pronounce rebel (audio) \

Kids Definition of rebel

 (Entry 1 of 3)

1 : a person who opposes or fights against a government
2 : a person who does not obey authority or follow usual standards

rebel

verb
re·​bel | \ ri-ˈbel How to pronounce rebel (audio) \
rebelled; rebelling

Kids Definition of rebel (Entry 2 of 3)

1 : to be or fight against authority and especially the authority of a person's government
2 : to feel or show anger, strong dislike, or disapproval “She wanted to make it a whole purple suit, but I rebelled.”— Louise Fitzhugh, Harriet the Spy

rebel

adjective
reb·​el | \ ˈre-bəl How to pronounce rebel (audio) \

Kids Definition of rebel (Entry 3 of 3)

: opposing or fighting against a government or ruler

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More from Merriam-Webster on rebel

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with rebel

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for rebel

Spanish Central: Translation of rebel

Nglish: Translation of rebel for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of rebel for Arabic Speakers

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