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English Dictionary: rat by the DICT Development Group
3 results for rat
From WordNet (r) 3.0 (2006) [wn]:
  1. any of various long-tailed rodents similar to but larger than a mouse
  2. someone who works (or provides workers) during a strike
    Synonym(s): scab, strikebreaker, blackleg, rat
  3. a person who is deemed to be despicable or contemptible; "only a rotter would do that"; "kill the rat"; "throw the bum out"; "you cowardly little pukes!"; "the British call a contemptible person a `git'"
    Synonym(s): rotter, dirty dog, rat, skunk, stinker, stinkpot, bum, puke, crumb, lowlife, scum bag, so-and-so, git
  4. one who reveals confidential information in return for money
    Synonym(s): informer, betrayer, rat, squealer, blabber
  5. a pad (usually made of hair) worn as part of a woman's coiffure
  1. desert one's party or group of friends, for example, for one's personal advantage
  2. employ scabs or strike breakers in
  3. take the place of work of someone on strike
    Synonym(s): fink, scab, rat, blackleg
  4. give (hair) the appearance of being fuller by using a rat
  5. catch rats, especially with dogs
  6. give away information about somebody; "He told on his classmate who had cheated on the exam"
    Synonym(s): denounce, tell on, betray, give away, rat, grass, shit, shop, snitch, stag
From Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary (1913) [web1913]:
   Rat \Rat\, n. [AS. r[91]t; akin to D. rat, OHG. rato, ratta, G.
      ratte, ratze, OLG. ratta, LG. & Dan. rotte, Sw. r[86]tta, F.
      rat, Ir. & Gael radan, Armor. raz, of unknown origin. Cf.
      1. (Zo[94]l.) One of the several species of small rodents of
            the genus {Mus} and allied genera, larger than mice, that
            infest houses, stores, and ships, especially the Norway,
            or brown, rat ({M. Alexandrinus}). These were introduced
            into Anerica from the Old World.
      2. A round and tapering mass of hair, or similar material,
            used by women to support the puffs and rolls of their
            natural hair. [Local, U.S.]
      3. One who deserts his party or associates; hence, in the
            trades, one who works for lower wages than those
            prescribed by a trades union. [Cant]
      Note: [bd]It so chanced that, not long after the accession of
               the house of Hanover, some of the brown, that is the
               German or Norway, rats, were first brought over to this
               country (in some timber as is said); and being much
               stronger than the black, or, till then, the common,
               rats, they in many places quite extirpated the latter.
               The word (both the noun and the verb to rat) was first,
               as we have seen, leveled at the converts to the
               government of George the First, but has by degrees
               obtained a wide meaning, and come to be applied to any
               sudden and mercenary change in politics.[b8] --Lord
      {Bamboo rat} (Zo[94]l.), any Indian rodent of the genus
      {Beaver rat}, {Coast rat}. (Zo[94]l.) See under {Beaver} and
      {Blind rat} (Zo[94]l.), the mole rat.
      {Cotton rat} (Zo[94]l.), a long-haired rat ({Sigmodon
            hispidus}), native of the Southern United States and
            Mexico. It makes its nest of cotton and is often injurious
            to the crop.
      {Ground rat}. See {Ground Pig}, under {Ground}.
      {Hedgehog rat}. See under {Hedgehog}.
      {Kangaroo rat} (Zo[94]l.), the potoroo.
      {Norway rat} (Zo[94]l.), the common brown rat. See {Rat}.
      {Pouched rat}. (Zo[94]l.)
            (a) See {Pocket Gopher}, under {Pocket}.
            (b) Any African rodent of the genus {Cricetomys}.
      {Rat Indians} (Ethnol.), a tribe of Indians dwelling near
            Fort Ukon, Alaska. They belong to Athabascan stock.
      {Rat mole}. (Zo[94]l.) See {Mole rat}, under {Mole}.
      {Rat pit}, an inclosed space into which rats are put to be
            killed by a dog for sport.
      {Rat snake} (Zo[94]l.), a large colubrine snake ({Ptyas
            mucosus}) very common in India and Ceylon. It enters
            dwellings, and destroys rats, chickens, etc.
      {Spiny rat} (Zo[94]l.), any South America rodent of the genus
      {To smell a rat}. See under {Smell}.
      {Wood rat} (Zo[94]l.), any American rat of the genus
            {Neotoma}, especially {N. Floridana}, common in the
            Southern United States. Its feet and belly are white.

From Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary (1913) [web1913]:
   Rat \Rat\, v. i. [imp. & p. p. {Ratted}; p. pr. & vb. n.
      1. In English politics, to desert one's party from interested
            motives; to forsake one's associates for one's own
            advantage; in the trades, to work for less wages, or on
            other conditions, than those established by a trades
                     Coleridge . . . incurred the reproach of having
                     ratted, solely by his inability to follow the
                     friends of his early days.                  --De Quincey.
      2. To catch or kill rats.
No guarantee of accuracy or completeness!
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