Rhone Look up Rhone at Dictionary.com
river in southeastern France, from a pre-Indo-European element *rod- meaning "to flow."
rhotacism (n.) Look up rhotacism at Dictionary.com
1830, from Modern Latin rhotacismus, from Greek rhotakizein, from rho "the letter -r-," from Hebrew or Phoenician roth. Excessive or peculiar use of the -r- sound (the "burr"), especially the conversion of another sound (usually -s-) to -r-; as in Aeolian Greek, which at the end of words changed -s- into -r- (hippor for hippos, etc.). Related: Rhotacize.
rhubarb (n.) Look up rhubarb at Dictionary.com
late 14c., from Old French rubarbe, from Medieval Latin rheubarbarum, from Greek rha barbaron "foreign rhubarb," from rha "rhubarb," perhaps ultimately from a source akin to Persian rewend "rhubarb" (associated in Greek with Rha, ancient Scythian name of the River Volga) + barbaron, neuter of barbaros "foreign" (see barbarian). Grown in China and Tibet, it was imported into ancient Europe by way of Russia.

Spelling altered in Medieval Latin by association with rheum. European native species so called from 1640s. Baseball slang meaning "loud squabble on the field" is from 1938, of unknown origin, said to have been first used by broadcaster Garry Schumacher. Perhaps connected with use of rhubarb as a word repeated by stage actors to give the impression of hubbub or conversation (attested from 1934).
rhyme (n.) Look up rhyme at Dictionary.com
"agreement in terminal sounds," 1560s, partially restored spelling, from Middle English ryme, rime (c.1200) "measure, meter, rhythm," later "rhymed verse" (mid-13c.), from Old French rime (fem.), related to Old Provençal rim (masc.), earlier *ritme, from Latin rithmus, from Greek rhythmos "measured motion, time, proportion" (see rhythm).

In Medieval Latin, rithmus was used for accentual, as opposed to quantitative, verse, and accentual verse usually was rhymed, hence the sense shift. Persistence of older form is due to popular association with Old English rim "number," from PIE root *re(i)- "to reason, count" (see read (v.)). Phrase rhyme or reason "good sense" (chiefly used in the negative) is from late 15c. (see reason (n.)). Rhyme scheme is attested from 1931. Rhyme royal (1841) is a stanza of seven 10-syllable lines rhymed a-b-a-b-b-c-c.
rhyme (v.) Look up rhyme at Dictionary.com
"make verses, make rhymes," c.1300, rimen, from Old French rimer, from rime "verse" (see rhyme (n.)). Attested 1670s (of words) in sense "to have the same end sound." Modern spelling is from 1650s, by influence of rhythm. Related: Rhymed; rhyming. The phrase rhyming slang is attested from 1859.
rhythm (n.) Look up rhythm at Dictionary.com
1550s, "rhymed verse, metrical movement," from Latin rhythmus "movement in time," from Greek rhythmos "measured flow or movement, rhythm; proportion, symmetry; arrangement, order; form, shape, wise, manner; soul, disposition," related to rhein "to flow," from PIE root *sreu- "to flow" (see rheum). Rhythm method of birth control attested from 1936. Rhythm and blues, U.S. music style, is from 1949 (first in "Billboard").
rhythmic (adj.) Look up rhythmic at Dictionary.com
1560s, from French rhythmique or directly from Latin rhythmicus, from Greek rhythmikos, from rhythmos (see rhythm). Related: Rhythmical; rhythmically.
ria (n.) Look up ria at Dictionary.com
from Spanish ria "estuary, river mouth" (adopted as a geological term first in German, 1886), from Latin ripa "stream bank" (see riparian).
rialto (n.) Look up rialto at Dictionary.com
1879, "exchange, mart," from the Rialto of Venice, the name of the quarter where the exchange was situated, contracted from Rivoalto and named for the canal (Latin rivus altus "deep stream") which it crosses.
riata (n.) Look up riata at Dictionary.com
1846, from Spanish reata (see lariat).
rib (n.) Look up rib at Dictionary.com
Old English ribb "rib," from Proto-Germanic *rebja- (cognates: Old Norse rif, Old Saxon ribbi, Old Frisian ribb, Middle Dutch, Dutch ribbe, Old High German ribba, German Rippe), literally "a covering" (of the cavity of the chest), from PIE *rebh- "to roof, cover" (cognates: Greek ereptein "to roof," Old Church Slavonic rebro "rib, reef"). As an item of food from early 15c. Rib joint "brothel" is slang from 1943, probably in reference to Adam's rib (compare rib "woman, wife," attested from 1580s).
rib (v.) Look up rib at Dictionary.com
"tease, fool," 1930, apparently from rib (n.); perhaps as a figurative suggestion of poking someone in the ribs. Related: Ribbed; ribbing.
ribald (adj.) Look up ribald at Dictionary.com
c.1500, from ribald, ribaud (n.), mid-13c., "a rogue, ruffian, rascall, scoundrell, varlet, filthie fellow" [Cotgrave], from Old French ribaut, ribalt "rogue, scoundrel, lewd lover," also as an adjective, "wanton, depraved, dissolute, licentious," of uncertain origin, perhaps (with suffix -ald) from riber "be wanton, sleep around, dally amorously," from a Germanic source (compare Old High German riban "be wanton," literally "to rub," possibly from the common euphemistic use of "rub" words to mean "have sex"), from Proto-Germanic *wribanan, from PIE root *wer- (3) "to turn, bend" (see versus).
ribaldry (n.) Look up ribaldry at Dictionary.com
early 14c., from Old French ribauderie "debauchery, licentiousness," from ribalt (see ribald).
riband (n.) Look up riband at Dictionary.com
archaic for "ribbon," late 14c., from ribbon, with excrescent -d.
ribband (n.) Look up ribband at Dictionary.com
1711, in shipbuilding, from rib (n.) + band (n.1).
ribbon (n.) Look up ribbon at Dictionary.com
early 14c., ribane, from Old French riban "a ribbon," variant of ruban (13c.), of unknown origin, possibly from a Germanic compound whose second element is related to band (n.1); compare Middle Dutch ringhband "necklace." Modern spelling is from mid-16c. Originally a stripe in a material. Custom of colored ribbon loops worn on lapels to declare support for some group perceived as suffering or oppressed began in 1991 with AIDS red ribbons.
riboflavin (n.) Look up riboflavin at Dictionary.com
growth-promoting substance known as vitamin B2, 1935, from German Riboflavin (1935), from comb. form of ribose + flavin, from Latin flavus "yellow" (see blue (1)); so called from its color. Also sometimes known as lactoflavine, as it is found in milk.
ribonucleic (adj.) Look up ribonucleic at Dictionary.com
1931, from ribo-, comb. form of ribose, the sugar component, + nucleic acid.
ribose (n.) Look up ribose at Dictionary.com
1892, from German Ribose (1891), from Ribonsäure, a tetrahydroxy acid, with first element shortened and arbitrarily rearranged from English arabinose (c.1880), a sugar which is so called because it is formed from gum arabic.
ribosome (n.) Look up ribosome at Dictionary.com
1958, coined by U.S. microbiologist Richard B. Roberts (1910-1980) from ribo(nucleic acid) + -some "body."
rice (n.) Look up rice at Dictionary.com
mid-13c., from Old French ris, from Italian riso, from Latin oriza, from Greek oryza "rice," via an Indo-Iranian language (compare Pashto vriže, Old Persian brizi), ultimately from Sanskrit vrihi-s "rice." The Greek word is the ultimate source of all European words (Welsh reis, German reis, Lithuanian rysai, Serbo-Croatian riza, Polish ryż, etc.). Introduced 1647 in the Carolinas. Rice paper (1822), originally used in China, Japan, etc., is made from straw of rice.
rich (adj.) Look up rich at Dictionary.com
Old English rice "strong, powerful; great, mighty; of high rank," in later Old English "wealthy," from Proto-Germanic *rikijaz (cognates: Old Norse rikr, Swedish rik, Danish rig, Old Frisian rike "wealthy, mighty," Dutch rijk, Old High German rihhi "ruler, powerful, rich," German reich "rich," Gothic reiks "ruler, powerful, rich"), borrowed from a Celtic source akin to Gaulish *rix, Old Irish ri (genitive rig) "king," from PIE root *reg- "move in a straight line," hence, "direct, rule" (see rex).

The form of the word was influenced in Middle English by Old French riche "wealthy, magnificent, sumptuous," which is, with Spanish rico, Italian ricco, from Frankish *riki "powerful," or some other cognate Germanic source.

Old English also had a noun, rice "rule, reign, power, might; authority; empire." The evolution of the word reflects a connection between wealth and power in the ancient world. Of food and colors, from early 14c.; of sounds, from 1590s. Sense of "entertaining, amusing" is recorded from 1760. The noun meaning "the wealthy" was in Old English.
Richard Look up Richard at Dictionary.com
masc. proper name, Middle English Rycharde, from Old French Richard, from Old High German Ricohard "strong in rule," from Proto-Germanic *rik- "ruler" (see rich) + *harthu "hard," from PIE *kar-o- (see hard). "One of the most popular names introduced by the Normans. Usually Latinized as Ricardus, the common form was Ricard, whence the pet form Rick, etc." ["Dictionary of English Surnames"]
riches (n.) Look up riches at Dictionary.com
"valued possessions, money, property," c.1200, modified from richesse (12c.), a singular form misunderstood as a plural, from Old French richesse, richece "wealth, opulence, splendor, magnificence," from riche (see rich (adj.)). The Old French suffix -esse is from Latin -itia, added to adjectives to form nouns of quality (compare duress, largesse).
richly (adv.) Look up richly at Dictionary.com
Old English ricelice "powerfully, sumptuously;" see rich (adj.) + -ly (2).
richness (n.) Look up richness at Dictionary.com
mid-14c., from rich (adj.) + -ness.
Richter scale Look up Richter scale at Dictionary.com
1938, devised by U.S. seismologist Charles Francis Richter (1900-1985).
ricin (n.) Look up ricin at Dictionary.com
poison obtained from the castor-oil bean, 1888, from ricinus, genus name of the castor-oil plant (1694), from Latin ricinus (Pliny), of uncertain origin, perhaps the same word as ricinus "tick" (in sheep, dogs, etc.).
rick (n.) Look up rick at Dictionary.com
Old English hreac "stack of hay or straw," from Proto-Germanic *khraukaz (cognates: Old Norse hraukr, Frisian reak, Dutch rook "heap"); perhaps related to ridge.
rickets (n.) Look up rickets at Dictionary.com
disease caused by vitamin D deficiency, 1630s, of uncertain origin. Originally a local name for the disease in Dorset and Somerset, England. Some derive it from a Dorset word, rucket "to breathe with difficulty," but the sense connection is difficult. The Modern Latin name for the disease, rachitis, comes from Greek rhakhis "spine" (see rachitic), but this was chosen by English physician Daniel Whistler (1619-1684) for resemblance to rickets.
rickettsia (n.) Look up rickettsia at Dictionary.com
parasitic organism, 1919, named 1916 in Modern Latin by H. da Rocha-Lima in honor of U.S. pathologist H.T. Ricketts (1871-1910), who first identified it in 1909 and died of typhus as a result of his contact with it. The bacteria causes typhus and Rocky Mountain spotted fever, but is unrelated by pathology or etymology to rickets (q.v.), which is the result of vitamin D deficiency. The surname is a development from Rickard, variant of Richard, or else from the diminutive form Ricot.
rickety (adj.) Look up rickety at Dictionary.com
"liable to fall down," 1680s, from rickets (with + -y (2)), via notion of "weak, unhealthy." Literal sense is from c.1720 but never common in English. Of material things, from 1799.
rickey (n.) Look up rickey at Dictionary.com
alcoholic drink made with carbonated water and lime juice, 1895; reputedly from the name of "Colonel" Joseph K. Rickey (1842-1903), Democrat, of Callaway County, Missouri, U.S., lobbyist and wire-puller, who is said to have concocted it to entertain political friends.
And as long as there is thirst and limes, or lemons and gin, so long will the Honorable Joe Rickey be remembered in Missouri and his famous beverage tickle the palates of discriminating citizens. A hundred summers hence Joe Rickey will be called and Champ Clark and DeArmond forgotten. ["The Conservative," Nebraska City, Neb., July 6, 1899.]
rickshaw (n.) Look up rickshaw at Dictionary.com
1887, shortened form of jinrikisha, popularized by Kipling, from Japanese jin "a man" + riki "power" + sha "carriage."
ricochet (v.) Look up ricochet at Dictionary.com
1758, originally in a military sense, from French ricochet (n.) "the skipping of a shot, or of a flat stone on water" (see ricochet (n.). Related: Ricochetted; ricochetting.
ricochet (n.) Look up ricochet at Dictionary.com
1769, from ricochet (v.) or French ricochet "the skipping of a shot or of a flat stone on water," but in earliest French use (15c.) "verbal to-and-fro," and only in the phrase fable du ricochet, an entertainment in which the teller of a tale skillfully evades questions, and chanson du ricochet, a kind of repetitious song; of uncertain origin.
ricotta (n.) Look up ricotta at Dictionary.com
kind of Italian cottage cheese, 1877, earlier ricoct (1580s), from Italian ricotta, literally "recooked," from fem. past participle of Latin recoquere, from re- "again" (see re-) + coquere "to cook" (see cook (n.)).
rid (v.) Look up rid at Dictionary.com
c.1200, "clear (a space); set free, save," from a Scandinavian source akin to Old Norse ryðja (past tense ruddi, past participle ruddr) "to clear (land) of obstructions," from Proto-Germanic *reudijan (cognates: Old High German riuten, German reuten "to clear land," Old Frisian rothia "to clear," Old English -royd "clearing," common in northern place names), from PIE root *reudh- "to clear land." The general sense of "to make (something) free (of something else)" emerged by 1560s. Senses merged somewhat with Northern English, Scottish, and U.S. dialectal redd. To get rid of (something or someone) is from 1660s. Related: Ridden; ridding.
riddance (n.) Look up riddance at Dictionary.com
1530s, from rid + -ance. Good riddance, "a welcome relief from unpleasant company or an embarrassing connection" attested from 1650s (fair riddance in same sense from 1610s).
ridden (adj.) Look up ridden at Dictionary.com
mid-14c., from past participle of ride (q.v.). Sense evolution, via horses, is from "that which has been ridden upon, broken in" (1520s) to, in compounds, "oppressed, taken advantage of" (1650s).
riddle (n.1) Look up riddle at Dictionary.com
"A word game or joke, comprising a question or statement couched in deliberately puzzling terms, propounded for solving by the hearer/reader using clues embedded within that wording" [Oxford Dictionary of English Folklore], early 13c., from Old English rædels "riddle; counsel; conjecture; imagination; discussion," common Germanic (Old Frisian riedsal "riddle," Old Saxon radisli, Middle Dutch raetsel, Dutch raadsel, Old High German radisle, German Rätsel "riddle").

The first element is from Proto-Germanic *redaz-, from PIE *re-dh-, from PIE *re(1)- "to reason, count" (cognates: Old English rædan "to advise, counsel, read, guess;" see read (v.)). The ending is Old English noun suffix -els, the -s of which later was mistaken for a plural affix and stripped off. Meaning "anything which puzzles or perplexes" is from late 14c.
riddle (v.1) Look up riddle at Dictionary.com
"perforate with many holes," 1817 (implied in riddled), earlier "sift" (early 13c.), from Middle English ridelle "coarse sieve," from late Old English hriddel "sieve," altered by dissimilation from Old English hridder "sieve" (see riddle (n.2)).
riddle (n.2) Look up riddle at Dictionary.com
"coarse sieve," mid-14c., alteration of late Old English hriddel, dissimilated from hridder, from Proto-Germanic *hrida- (cognates: German Reiter), from PIE root *krei- "to sieve," and thus related to Latin cribrum "sieve, riddle," Greek krinein "to separate, distinguish, decide" (see crisis).
riddle (v.2) Look up riddle at Dictionary.com
"to pose as a riddle," 1570s, from riddle (n.1). Related: Riddled; riddler; riddling.
ride (v.) Look up ride at Dictionary.com
Old English ridan "sit or be carried on" (as on horseback), "move forward; rock; float, sail" (class I strong verb; past tense rad, past participle riden), from Proto-Germanic *ridan (cognates: Old Norse riða, Old Saxon ridan, Old Frisian rida "to ride," Middle Dutch riden, Dutch rijden, Old High Germn ritan, German reiten), from PIE *reidh- "to ride" (cognates: Old Irish riadaim "I travel," Old Gaulish reda "chariot"). Common to Celtic and Germanic, perhaps a loan word from one to the other.

Meaning "heckle" is from 1912; that of "have sex with (a woman)" is from mid-13c.; that of "dominate cruelly" is from 1580s. To ride out "endure (a storm, etc.) without great damage" is from 1520s. To ride shotgun is 1963, from custom of having an armed man beside the driver on the stagecoach in Old West movies to ward off trouble. To ride shank's mare "walk" is from 1846 (see shank (n.)).
ride (n.) Look up ride at Dictionary.com
1759, "journey on the back of a horse or in a vehicle," from ride (v.); slang meaning "a motor vehicle" is recorded from 1930; sense of "amusement park device" is from 1934. Meaning "act of sexual intercourse" is from 1937. To take (someone) for a ride "tease, mislead, cheat," is first attested 1925, American English, possibly from underworld sense of "take on a car trip with intent to kill" (1927). Phrase go along for the ride in the figurative sense "join in passively" is from 1956. A ride cymbal (1956) is used by jazz drummers for keeping up continuous rhythm, as opposed to a crash cymbal (ride as "rhythm" in jazz slang is recorded from 1936).
rider (n.) Look up rider at Dictionary.com
"one who rides," Old English ridere "rider, trooper, knight, mounted warrior," agent noun from ride (v.). Meaning "clause tacked on to a document after first draft" is from 1660s. Related: Riderless.
ridership (n.) Look up ridership at Dictionary.com
mid-15c., "position of a rider," from rider + -ship. From 1962 as "number of passengers" (on public transportation, etc.).
ridge (n.) Look up ridge at Dictionary.com
Old English hrycg "back of a man or beast," probably reinforced by Old Norse hryggr "back, ridge," from Proto-Germanic *khrugjaz (cognates: Old Frisian hregg, Old Saxon hruggi, Dutch rug, Old High German hrukki, German Rücken "the back"), of uncertain origin. Also in Old English, "the top or crest of anything," especially when long and narrow. The connecting notion is of the "ridge" of the backbone. Spelling with -dg- is from late 15c. Ridge-runner "Southern Appalachian person" first recorded 1917.