v. & n.
—v. (rubbed, rubbing)
1 tr. move one's hand or another object with firm pressure over the surface of.
2 tr. (usu. foll. by against, in, on, over) apply (one's hand etc.) in this way.
3 tr. clean or polish or make dry or bare by rubbing.
4 tr. (often foll. by over) apply (polish, ointment, etc.) by rubbing.
5 tr. (foll. by in, into, through) use rubbing to make (a substance) go into or through something.
6 tr. (often foll. by together) move or slide (objects) against each other.
7 intr. (foll. by against, on) move with contact or friction.
8 tr. chafe or make sore by rubbing.
9 intr. (of cloth, skin, etc.) become frayed or worn or sore or bare with friction.
10 tr. reproduce the design of (a sepulchral brass or a stone) by rubbing paper laid on it with heelball or coloured chalk etc.
11 tr. (foll. by to) reduce to powder etc. by rubbing.
12 intr. Bowls (of a bowl) be slowed or diverted by the unevenness of the ground.
1 a spell or an instance of rubbing (give it a rub).
2 a an impediment or difficulty (there's the rub). b Bowls an inequality of the ground impeding or diverting a bowl; the diversion or hindering of a bowl by this.
Phrases and idioms:
rub along colloq. cope or manage without undue difficulty. rub down dry or smooth or clean by rubbing. rub-down n. an instance of rubbing down. rub elbows with US = rub shoulders with. rub one's hands rub one's hands together usu. in sign of keen satisfaction, or for warmth. rub it in (or rub a person's nose in it) emphasize or repeat an embarrassing fact etc. rub noses rub one's nose against another's in greeting. rub off
1 (usu. foll. by on) be transferred by contact, be transmitted (some of his attitudes have rubbed off on me).
2 remove by rubbing. rub of (or on) the green Golf an accidental interference with the course or position of a ball. rub on colloq. = rub along.
1 erase with a rubber.
2 esp. US sl. kill, eliminate. rub shoulders with associate or come into contact with (another person).
1 polish (a tarnished object).
2 brush up (a subject or one's memory).
3 mix (pigment etc.) into paste by rubbing. rub-up n. the act or an instance of rubbing up. rub up the wrong way irritate or repel as by stroking a cat against the lie of its fur.
Etymology: ME rubben, perh. f. LG rubben, of unkn. orig.
n. = RUBBER(2).
Useful english dictionary. 2012.