\ ˈrīp How to pronounce ripe (audio) \
riper; ripest

Definition of ripe

1 : fully grown and developed : mature ripe fruit ripe wheat
2 : having mature knowledge, understanding, or judgment
3 : of advanced years : late a ripe old age
4a : suitable, appropriate the time was ripe for the attempt
b : fully prepared : ready the colonies were ripe for revolution
5a : brought by aging to full flavor or the best state : mellow ripe cheese
6 : ruddy, plump, or full like ripened fruit a ripe figure
7 : indecent ripe language

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Other Words from ripe

ripely adverb
ripeness noun

Examples of ripe in a Sentence

The apples are nearly ripe. the clothes of the field hands were sweaty and ripe after a hard day's work
Recent Examples on the Web But in a community that sees police chases nearly every day and struggles to pay its officers a starting wage of more than $18 an hour, the issues are ripe for debate. John Caniglia, cleveland, 3 Oct. 2021 The founding team began to see more and more opportunity and an industry that was ripe for disruption. Dr Geraint Evans, Forbes, 30 Sep. 2021 Stand-up comedy is ripe for the uneasy, false collapse of the personal and the performance. Kathryn Vanarendonk, Vulture, 30 Sep. 2021 And West Virginia is ripe for reinvestment, according to Jeremy Richardson, a native West Virginian and a senior analyst with the Union of Concerned Scientists’ Climate and Energy program. NBC News, 29 Sep. 2021 Atlantic conditions are ripe for development, and Peter could briefly reform into a tropical depression again Tuesday. Lynnette Cantos,, 28 Sep. 2021 The question of whether chain laws are ripe for rethinking is particularly urgent now, as San Francisco small businesses struggle due to the pandemic and many commercial corridor deal with a glut of empty storefronts, critics of the law argue. Shwanika Narayan, San Francisco Chronicle, 28 Sep. 2021 Moments like this are ripe for procedural mishaps that lead the chambers to stumble into a shut down. Phil Mattingly, CNN, 28 Sep. 2021 With the pandemic accelerating the growth of online shopping, Chicago’s retail footprint may also be ripe for redevelopment. Robert Channick,, 27 Sep. 2021

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

before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for ripe

Middle English, from Old English rīpe; akin to Old English rīpan, reopan to reap

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Time Traveler for ripe

Time Traveler

The first known use of ripe was before the 12th century

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Dictionary Entries Near ripe

rip current


ripe for abuse

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Statistics for ripe

Last Updated

6 Oct 2021

Cite this Entry

“Ripe.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 17 Oct. 2021.

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More Definitions for ripe



English Language Learners Definition of ripe

: fully grown and developed and ready to be eaten
: ready or suitable for something
: brought to full flavor or the best state by being stored for a period of time


\ ˈrīp How to pronounce ripe (audio) \
riper; ripest

Kids Definition of ripe

1 : fully grown and developed ripe fruit
2 : of advanced years a ripe old age
3 : ready entry 1 sense 1 They were ripe for action.

Other Words from ripe

ripeness noun



Legal Definition of ripe

1 : of, relating to, or being a claim for relief that is ready for judicial resolution because the injury is certain to occur and is not merely hypothetical or speculative — compare moot
2 : ready and appropriate for disclosure because reasonably determined to be valid and not required to be kept secret for business reasons used of corporate information

Other Words from ripe

ripeness noun

More from Merriam-Webster on ripe

Nglish: Translation of ripe for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of ripe for Arabic Speakers


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