Rifle meaning

rīfəl
To cut spiral grooves within (a gun barrel, for example).
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To search (an area or container, for example) thoroughly, especially using the hands with the intent to steal or remove something.

Rifled the desk, looking for the keys.

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Troops armed with rifles.
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To rob or search with the intent to rob.

Rifled the travelers of their belongings.

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To steal (goods).
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To search vigorously.

Rifling through my drawers to find matching socks.

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To cut spiral grooves on the inside of (a gun barrel, etc.)
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To hurl or throw with great speed.
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Troops armed with rifles.
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To take as plunder; steal.
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To search hurriedly, sometimes with dishonest intent.

To rifle through a stranger's purse.

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A long firearm firing a single projectile, usually with a rifled barrel to improve accuracy.
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A strip of wood covered with emery or a similar material, used for sharpening scythes.
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To search with intent to steal; to ransack, pillage or plunder.
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To scan many items (especially papers) in a set, quickly. (See also riffle)

She made a mess when she rifled through the stack of papers, looking for the title document.

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To add a spiral to the interior of a gun bore to make a fired bullet spin in flight to improve range and accuracy.
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To strike something with great power.
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(intransitive) To commit robbery.

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To strip of goods; to rob; to pillage.
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To seize and bear away by force; to snatch away; to carry off.
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To raffle.

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Origin of rifle

  • From rifle to cut spiral grooves in from French rifler from Old French to plunder, scratch rifle2

    From American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition

  • Middle English riflen to plunder from Old French rifler probably of Germanic origin

    From American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition

  • Middle English, from Old French rifler (“to scrape off, plunder"), from Old Low Franconian *riffilōn (compare obsolete Dutch rijffelen 'to scrape', Old English geriflian (“to wrinkle"), Middle High German riffeln (“to scratch, heckle (flax)"), Old High German riffilōn (“to saw, rub apart")), frequentative of Proto-Germanic *rÄ«fanÄ… (compare Old Norse rifa (“to tear, break")). More at rive.

    From Wiktionary