noun, often capitalized
rug·​by | \ ˈrəg-bē \

Definition of rugby

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a football game in which play is continuous without time-outs or substitutions, interference and forward passing are not permitted, and kicking, dribbling, lateral passing, and tackling are featured


geographical name
Rug·​by | \ ˈrəg-bē \

Definition of Rugby (Entry 2 of 2)

town on the Avon River in Warwickshire, central England population 71,000

Examples of rugby in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

This museum is perfect for folks who will geek out about memorabilia from the Olympics, boxing, rugby union, and other Australian sports. Carrie Hutchinson, Condé Nast Traveler, "10 Best Museums in Melbourne," 26 Sep. 2018 Along with chunky sneakers, rugby shirts and bucket hats, the renaissance of chubby parkas aligns with a larger ’90s fashion revival. Jacob Gallagher, WSJ, "Your Puffy Coat Is Too Puffy," 14 Nov. 2018 They were devised by Alred, an Englishman who specializes in performance psychology and has worked with rugby and soccer stars. Brian Costa, WSJ, "The Uncomfortable Practice Habits of a Champion," 27 July 2018 Meanwhile, the 2018 Asian Games in Indonesia will include e-sports alongside the likes of track and field, rugby, and gymnastics. Andrew Webster, The Verge, "Why competitive gaming is starting to look a lot like professional sports," 27 July 2018 Four years later, in 1992, her husband died of a heart attack while playing rugby, leaving her a young widow with two small children and pregnant with her third. Clare Ansberry, WSJ, "After Tragedy, How Survivors Cope," 30 July 2018 On June 18, 2018, Zara and her husband, former rugby player Mike Tindall, welcome their second daughter, Lena. Amy Mackelden, Harper's BAZAAR, "The Internet Wants to Know What Mia Tindall Is Holding in Princess Eugenie's Wedding Portraits," 14 Oct. 2018 Both have mastered the game, while still playing rugby. Richard Obert, azcentral, "From refugee camp to football stardom, Kwete twins making it big at Central," 1 May 2018 In addition to playing on the same rugby team, they were also honored as members of the elite group of seniors tasked with exercising discipline at the school. Maria Pasquini,, "Meghan Markle Supports Prince Harry at Polo Match on Princess Diana's Birthday," 1 July 2018

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


1864, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for rugby


Rugby School, Rugby, England

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Dictionary Entries near rugby



rug brick



Rugby game

Rugby League

Statistics for rugby

Last Updated

14 Jan 2019

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Time Traveler for rugby

The first known use of rugby was in 1864

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More Definitions for rugby



English Language Learners Definition of rugby

: a game played by two teams in which each team tries to carry or kick a ball over the other team's goal line

More from Merriam-Webster on rugby

Spanish Central: Translation of rugby Encyclopedia article about rugby

Comments on rugby

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a complex dispute or argument

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