Definition of rod
1a (1) : a straight slender stick growing on or cut from a tree or bush (2) : osier (3) : a stick or bundle of twigs used to punish; also : punishment (4) : a shepherd's cudgel (5) : a pole with a line and usually a reel attached for fishingb (1) : a slender bar (as of wood or metal) (2) : a bar or staff for measuring (3) : scepter; also : a wand or staff carried as a badge of office (as of marshal)
2a : a unit of length — see weight tableb : a square rod
3 : any of the long rod-shaped photosensitive receptors in the retina responsive to faint light — compare cone 3a
4 : a rod-shaped bacterium
5 slang : handgun
rodlessplay \-ləs\ adjective
rodlikeplay \-ˌlīk\ adjective
Examples of rod in a Sentence
arrested for using a rod on his dogs in violation of the state's animal cruelty laws
Recent Examples of rod from the Web
Across Western Europe and the United States, immigrants from poorer countries, whether plumbers from Poland or farmhands from Mexico, have become a lightning rod for economic anxieties over cheap labor.
And sure enough, something's going down in Beacon Hills (OK, when was there ever not something spooky happening in this supernatural lightning rod of a town).
Classic and antique cars, hot rods and muscle cars, motorcycles, off-road vehicles, food and drinks.
Police again used water cannon trucks against rioters attacking them with iron rods and pavement stones.
Doctors decided to insert a permanent rod alongside the backbone to correct the upper part of the spine.
The findings on the fuel rods have to be taken seriously and Brokdorf may not restart before the cause has been found, the regulator said at the time.
The two tunnels are in the 200 East Area, where plutonium was recovered from irradiated uranium-fuel rods.
Nine of the 12 youngsters had never handled a fishing rod.
These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'rod.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.
Origin and Etymology of rod
Middle English, from Old English rodd; akin to Old Norse rudda club
First Known Use: before 12th centurySee Words from the same year
ROD Defined for English Language Learners
Definition of rod for English Language Learners
: a straight, thin stick or bar
: a pole with a line and usually a reel that is used in fishing
: a stick used to hit or whip someone as a form of punishment
ROD Defined for Kids
Definition of rod for Students
1 : a light flexible pole often with line and a reel attached used in fishing
2 : a stick or bundle of twigs used in whipping a person
3 : a straight slender stick or bar
4 : a measure of length equal to 161⁄2 feet (about 5 meters)
5 : a cell of the retina of the eye that is shaped like a rod and is sensitive to faint light
Seen and Heard
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