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rip·​rap ˈrip-ˌrap How to pronounce riprap (audio)
: a foundation or sustaining wall of stones or chunks of concrete thrown together without order (as in deep water)
also : a layer of this or similar material on an embankment slope to prevent erosion
: material used for riprap


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riprapped; riprapping; ripraps

transitive verb

: to form a riprap in or upon
: to strengthen or support with a riprap

Examples of riprap in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web
Other habitat options include docks, bridges, laydown trees, and riprap banks. David A. Brown, Field & Stream, 28 Feb. 2024 The city took drastic measures, protecting the plant with a 425-foot-long embankment of boulders known as riprap. Eli Ramos, The Mercury News, 31 Jan. 2024 The rocks, known as riprap, help prevent erosion of the canal bank and improve water flow, Borenstein said. Susannah Bryan, Sun Sentinel, 5 Jan. 2024 The Coast Guard placed riprap and dozens of gabions along the ledges to absorb the force of the breakers, but, as ocean levels have risen and nor’easters intensified, a fault line between the tower’s foot and the foghorn’s generator house has widened. Dorothy Wickenden, The New Yorker, 30 Oct. 2023 After the storms of 1998, the city shored up its defenses again; state and federal agencies gave Pacifica $1.5 million to pile riprap at the base of the cliff. Daniel A. Gross, The New Yorker, 5 Nov. 2023 The experimental program added 8 acres of dunes covering a base of rock riprap and cobble, and planted with native vegetation for stability. Phil Diehl, San Diego Union-Tribune, 10 Sep. 2023 It can be done by accelerating the evolution of the stream channel to a certain depth and/or width, then lining the channel with riprap, or strategically placed rocks. Bob Sandrick, cleveland, 29 Aug. 2023 The commission hired a contractor to stabilize banks with riprap. Bryan Hendricks, Arkansas Online, 18 June 2023
Crank rocks and riprap for staging bass. Steve Price, Field & Stream, 14 Mar. 2023

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'riprap.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History



obsolete riprap sound of rapping

First Known Use


1822, in the meaning defined at sense 1


1837, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of riprap was in 1822

Dictionary Entries Near riprap

Cite this Entry

“Riprap.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 22 Apr. 2024.

Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
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