rubbing

noun
rub·​bing | \ ˈrə-biŋ How to pronounce rubbing (audio) \

Definition of rubbing

: an image of a raised, incised, or textured surface obtained by placing paper over it and rubbing the paper with a colored substance

Examples of rubbing in a Sentence

He made a rubbing of the old tombstone.
Recent Examples on the Web Fumes and filth meant considerable cleaning labor for women—rubbing overalls with lard to remove industrial grease or scrubbing the basin of a washing machine to excise dust and silt. Scott W. Stern, The New Republic, "A Rust Belt City’s New Working Class," 31 Mar. 2021 Contact through touching or rubbing eyes may result in substantial but temporary eye injury. Washington Post, "Bear spray is showing up at protests and riots. Here’s why, and how it affects humans.," 19 Mar. 2021 Switching to supportive insoles or changing your shoes may help place your foot in a more anatomically correct position, thus reducing the amount of friction or rubbing on these areas inside footwear. Sian Babish, chicagotribune.com, "How to get rid of dead skin on feet," 21 Mar. 2021 They’re also designed to guard against rubbing that could cause blisters. Los Angeles Times, "Hiking wardrobe hit a plateau? Here’s how to level up," 13 Mar. 2021 The gathering had vanished after a little rubbing, with no visible changes to the fabric. Noelle Ike, CNN Underscored, "We tried Sheertex’s infamous ‘unrippable’ tights, and here’s what we thought," 3 Mar. 2021 Dab on and blot off, because rubbing might stretch the fabric or cause it to pill. Washington Post, "What’s the best way to clean my dirty cellular shades?," 1 Mar. 2021 Video Presented with scraps of paper dosed with iridoid, most of the cats initiated a ritualized rolling and rubbing. New York Times, "Your Cat Isn’t Just Getting High Off Catnip," 20 Jan. 2021 Valentine’s Art Virtual Workshop — Learn how to incorporate tissue printing, crayon rubbing, watercolor techniques and more into handmade valentines. Anchorage Daily News, "A roundup of fun, pandemic-safe events happening soon in Anchorage," 4 Feb. 2021

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

1845, in the meaning defined above

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about rubbing

Time Traveler for rubbing

Time Traveler

The first known use of rubbing was in 1845

See more words from the same year

Statistics for rubbing

Last Updated

8 Apr 2021

Cite this Entry

“Rubbing.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/rubbing. Accessed 12 Apr. 2021.

Style: MLA
MLACheck Mark Icon ChicagoCheck Mark Icon APACheck Mark Icon Merriam-WebsterCheck Mark Icon

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for rubbing

rubbing

noun

English Language Learners Definition of rubbing

: an image of a surface that is made by placing paper over it and rubbing the paper with a pencil, crayon, etc.

Keep scrolling for more

Comments on rubbing

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

WORD OF THE DAY

Test Your Vocabulary

The Exceptions Quiz III

  • one green toy robot amidst many red toy robots
  • Which of these words does not mean "nonsense"?
Name That Thing

Test your visual vocabulary with our 10-question challenge!

TAKE THE QUIZ
Typeshift

Anagram puzzles meet word search.

TAKE THE QUIZ
Love words? Need even more definitions?

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