\ˈrī(-ə)l \
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

That a single British woman in the game’s reveal trailer has Battlefield players so riled up is willful ignorance that such a role could have ever existed in history. Megan Farokhmanesh, The Verge, "Battlefield V fans who failed history are mad the game has women in it," 24 May 2018 Few things succeed in riling up the Internet faster, unleashing a unique cocktail of amazement and terror, than a new Boston Dynamics robot video. Peter Holley,, "Video of jogging humanoid robot scares internet," 14 May 2018 Few things succeed in riling up the Internet faster, unleashing a unique cocktail of amazement and terror, than a new Boston Dynamics robot video. Peter Holley,, "Boston Dynamics posts video of jogging humanoid robot that scares the internet," 11 May 2018 The order of ingredients is also important, which is one reason this Bon Appétit video recipe for Pietro’s chicken Parmesan got more than a few Italians riled up. Carla Ciccone, Bon Appetit, "The “Italians Mad at Food” Twitter Account Is Too Real to My Life," 7 May 2018 USA TODAY Sports One year after Drew Pearson riled up Eagles fans on hand for the NFL draft in Philadelphia, the tables were turned on the Dallas Cowboys' supporters. Lorenzo Reyes, USA TODAY, "Ex-Eagles kicker David Akers trolls Cowboys fans with vicious intro at NFL draft," 27 Apr. 2018 The build-up to the choice was heavy as Cowboys legend Drew Pearson riled up the crowd from the stage. Peter Dawson, star-telegram, "Leighton Vander Esch pick draws mixed reviews from Cowboys fans | Fort Worth Star-Telegram," 26 Apr. 2018 But Trump’s threats are already riling relations around the world. Tory Newmyer, Washington Post, "The Finance 202: Is what's good for General Motors still good for the country?," 3 July 2018 Nonetheless, the supply management system riles up Mr. Trump, who says the Canadian market should be fully opened to American dairy farmers. Ian Austen, New York Times, "Trudeau’s Challenge: Managing Trump and Domestic Politics," 11 June 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

5 Nov 2018

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)

: to make (someone) very excited


\ˈrīl \
riled; riling

Kids Definition of rile

: to make angry

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Comments on rile

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


to clear from alleged fault or guilt

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