\ˈräb \
robbed; robbing

Definition of rob 

transitive verb

1a(1) : to take something away from by force : steal from

(2) : to take personal property from by violence or threat

b(1) : to remove valuables without right from (a place)

(2) : to take the contents of (a receptacle)

c : to take away as loot : steal rob jewelry

2a : to deprive of something due, expected, or desired

b : to withhold unjustly or injuriously

intransitive verb

: to commit robbery

Keep scrolling for more

Other Words from rob

robber noun

Can rob mean 'to steal'?: Usage Guide

Transitive sense 1c, in which the direct object is the thing stolen, is sometimes considered to be wrong, or perhaps archaic. The sense has been in use since the 13th century and is found in earlier literature. contrive to rob the honey and subvert the hive — John Dryden It is still in use though not as common as other senses. then robbed $100 after the clerk fled Springfield (Mass.) Morning Union

Examples of rob in a Sentence

Someone tried to rob me. The cashier was robbed at gunpoint.

Recent Examples on the Web

There are missions to take on, which typically revolve around a big score, like robbing a bank or hijacking a train. Andrew Webster, The Verge, "Red Dead Redemption 2 is the most convincing open-world game ever made," 25 Oct. 2018 It was thought at the time that the young men were allegedly driving away from the home of Los Angeles Rams receiver Robert Woods after robbing his home in Woodland Hills. Allie Gemmill, Teen Vogue, "3 Teenagers Were Arrested for Allegedly Robbing Rihanna, Christina Milian, and Other Celebrities," 3 Oct. 2018 The challenge is creating components of logic circuits that work reliably without interference from the natural activity in cells, and that don’t rob cells of too much energy or too many resources. Eric Smalley, Discover Magazine, "Cellular Cyborgs: How Programmable DNA Strands Might Control Healing," 25 Sep. 2018 The Aurora Bank & Trust was robbed Thursday by an armed man and woman, according to police. Megan Jones, Aurora Beacon-News, "Aurora Bank & Trust robbed Thursday afternoon, FBI says," 31 May 2018 And though robots are seen as robbing people of jobs, the opposite is the case with warehouse technology. Stephen Singer,, "Helped By Robotics, Amazon Expands Windsor Facility," 25 May 2018 Going forward, those press screenings will be held either concurrent with or after the film’s public gala screening, robbing journalists of their early access. Justin Chang,, "Day 3: Russian drama takes the stage at Cannes in the sweet 'Leto' and the scathing 'Donbass'," 11 May 2018 The Orioles' half of the 13th inning featured a home run-robbing catch by Judge of Joseph, but the fatal blow was soon to follow. Jon Meoli,, "Pedro Álvarez hits tiebreaking grand slam in 14th, gives Orioles 7-3 win over Yankees," 7 Apr. 2018 Officers say a 42-year-old man was having car trouble when he was robbed at gunpoint by two suspects at about 1 a.m. Sunday. Lauren Lumpkin,, "Baltimore County police investigate two nonfatal shootings, make one arrest," 8 July 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'rob.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

See More

First Known Use of rob

13th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1a(1)

History and Etymology for rob

Middle English robben, from Anglo-French rober, of Germanic origin; akin to Old High German roubōn to rob — more at reave

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about rob

Statistics for rob

Last Updated

13 Nov 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for rob

The first known use of rob was in the 13th century

See more words from the same century

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for rob



English Language Learners Definition of rob

: to take money or property from (a person or a place) illegally and sometimes by using force, violence, or threats

: to keep (someone) from getting something expected or wanted


\ˈräb \
robbed; robbing

Kids Definition of rob

1 : to unlawfully take something away from a person or place in secrecy or by force, threat, or trickery

2 : to keep from getting something due, expected, or desired The noisy party robbed her of sleep.

Other Words from rob

robber noun

Keep scrolling for more

Comments on rob

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


full of whispering sounds

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Difficult Vocab Quiz

  • the-education-of-achilles-eugne-delacroix
  • Which is a synonym of discomfit?
How Strong Is Your Vocabulary?

Test your vocabulary with our 10-question quiz!

Add Diction

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.


Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!