\ ˈrī(-ə)l How to pronounce rile (audio) \
riled; riling

Definition of rile

transitive verb

1 : to make agitated and angry : upset

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Choose the Right Synonym for rile

irritate, exasperate, nettle, provoke, rile, peeve mean to excite a feeling of anger or annoyance. irritate implies an often gradual arousing of angry feelings that may range from mere impatience to rage. constant nagging that irritated me greatly exasperate suggests galling annoyance and the arousing of extreme impatience. his exasperating habit of putting off needed decisions nettle suggests a sharp but passing annoyance or stinging. your pompous attitude nettled several people provoke implies an arousing of strong annoyance that may excite to action. remarks made solely to provoke her rile implies inducing an angry or resentful agitation. the new work schedules riled the employees peeve suggests arousing fretful often petty or querulous irritation. a toddler peeved at being refused a cookie

Examples of rile in a Sentence

Her comments riled the professor. one sure way to rile me is to keep yelling for me

Recent Examples on the Web

Born to be riled Get our daily newsletter Upgrade your inbox and get our Daily Dispatch and Editor's Picks. The Economist, "Business this week," 28 June 2018 But their inherent ick factor has people on Facebook a little too riled up about the upcoming tick season. Caroline Picard, Good Housekeeping, "That Viral Photo of a “Tick Nest” Is a Hoax, According to an Entomologist," 18 Apr. 2019 America's Got Talent fans were pretty riled up Tuesday night. Kayla Keegan, Good Housekeeping, "'America's Got Talent' Viewers Were Fuming at “Party Pooper” Howie Mandel Last Night," 22 Aug. 2018 There's nothing better than flying those doors open, hearing some cool music, getting the fans riled up and having that home cooking, going out and trying to get things done. Bill Shaikin,, "Trevor Hoffman's election to Hall of Fame gives some relief to San Diego," 25 Jan. 2018 Some fear those actions will rile up frustrated inmates, making the prison more dangerous for workers. Kevin Crowe, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Overtime in Wisconsin prisons tops $42 million as state wrestles with worker shortage," 18 May 2018 Meanwhile, Turkey’s support of Islamists also has riled Gulf Arab nations, who view groups like the Muslim Brotherhood as a threat. Ayse Wieting, The Seattle Times, "Turkey to search Saudi Consulate for missing journalist," 9 Oct. 2018 Rosenstein oversees special counsel Robert Mueller’s Russia investigation, and the news has already riled up some of Trump’s conservative allies. Jen Kirby, Vox, "Former FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe is at the center of a political firestorm again," 21 Sep. 2018 The video of Williams’s interaction with the officers has riled the city of Lancaster and become the latest exhibit in the debate about whether police are too quick to use physical force — especially against minorities. Cleve R. Wootson Jr., Washington Post, "He was seated, unarmed and not combative. An officer used a Taser on him anyway.," 1 July 2018

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

1624, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for rile

variant of roil

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Statistics for rile

Last Updated

21 May 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for rile

The first known use of rile was in 1624

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More Definitions for rile



English Language Learners Definition of rile

: to make (someone) angry : to irritate or annoy (someone)
US, informal : to make (someone) very excited


\ ˈrīl How to pronounce rile (audio) \
riled; riling

Kids Definition of rile

: to make angry

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More from Merriam-Webster on rile

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with rile

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for rile

Spanish Central: Translation of rile

Nglish: Translation of rile for Spanish Speakers

Comments on rile

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one that collects or salvages junk

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