Pronunciation Verb

ride (rides, present participle riding; past rode, past participle ridden)

  1. (intransitive, transitive) To transport oneself by sitting on and directing a horse, later also a bicycle etc. [from 8th c., transitive usage from 9th c.]
    • 1597, William Shakespeare, King Henry IV, Part 1
      Go Peto, to horse: for thou, and I, / Haue thirtie miles to ride yet ere dinner time.
    • 1814 July, [Jane Austen], chapter XV, in Mansfield Park: A Novel. In Three Volumes, volume I, London: Printed for T[homas] Egerton, […], OCLC 39810224 ↗, page 310 ↗:
      {...}} I will take my horse early to-morrow morning and ride over to Stoke, and settle with one of them.
    • 1923, "Mrs. Rinehart", Time, 28 Apr 1923
      It is characteristic of her that she hates trains, that she arrives from a rail-road journey a nervous wreck; but that she can ride a horse steadily for weeks through the most dangerous western passes.
    • 2010, The Guardian, 6 Oct 2010 ↗
      The original winner Azizulhasni Awang of Malaysia was relegated after riding too aggressively to storm from fourth to first on the final bend.
  2. (intransitive, transitive) To be transported in a vehicle; to travel as a passenger. [from 9th c., transitive usage from 19th c.]
    • 1851, Herman Melville, Moby-Dick
      Now, in calm weather, to swim in the open ocean is as easy to the practised swimmer as to ride in a spring-carriage ashore.
    • 1960, "Biznelcmd", Time, 20 Jun 1960
      In an elaborately built, indoor San Francisco, passengers ride cable cars through quiet, hilly streets.
  3. (transitive, chiefly US and South Africa) To transport (someone) in a vehicle. [from 17th c.]
    The cab rode him downtown.
  4. (intransitive) Of a ship: to sail, to float on the water. [from 10th c.]
    • Men once walked where ships at anchor ride.
    • 1719, Daniel Defoe, Robinson Crusoe
      By noon the sea went very high indeed, and our ship rode forecastle in, shipped several seas, and we thought once or twice our anchor had come home […]
  5. (transitive, intransitive) To be carried or supported by something lightly and quickly; to travel in such a way, as though on horseback. [from 10th c.]
    The witch cackled and rode away on her broomstick.
  6. (transitive) To traverse by riding.
    • 1999, David Levinson, ‎Karen Christensen, Encyclopedia of World Sport: From Ancient Times to the Present
      Early women tobogganists rode the course in the requisite attire of their day: skirts. In spite of this hindrance, some women riders turned in very respectable performances.
  7. (transitive) To convey, as by riding; to make or do by riding.
    How many races have you ridden this year?
    • {{RQ:Scott Marmion|passage=The only men that safe can ride / Mine errands on the Scottish side.
  8. (intransitive) To support a rider, as a horse; to move under the saddle.
    A horse rides easy or hard, slow or fast.
  9. (intransitive, transitive) To mount (someone) to have sex with them; to have sexual intercourse with. [from 13th c.]
    • 1997, Linda Howard, Son of the Morning, page 345
      She rode him hard, and he squeezed her breasts, and she came again.
  10. (transitive, colloquial) To nag or criticize; to annoy (someone). [from 19th c.]
    • 2002, Myra MacPherson, Long Time Passing: Vietnam and the haunted generation, page 375
      “One old boy started riding me about not having gone to Vietnam; I just spit my coffee at him, and he backed off.
  11. (intransitive) Of clothing: to gradually move (up) and crease; to ruckle. [from 19th c.]
    • 2008, Ann Kessel, The Guardian, 27 Jul 2008 ↗
      In athletics, triple jumper Ashia Hansen advises a thong for training because, while knickers ride up, ‘thongs have nowhere left to go’: but in Beijing Britain's best are likely, she says, to forgo knickers altogether, preferring to go commando for their country under their GB kit.
  12. (intransitive) To rely, depend (on). [from 20th c.]
    • 2006, "Grappling with deficits", The Economist, 9 Mar 2006:
      With so much riding on the new payments system, it was thus a grave embarrassment to the government when the tariff for 2006-07 had to be withdrawn for amendments towards the end of February.
  13. (intransitive) Of clothing: to rest (in a given way on a part of the body). [from 20th c.]
    • 2001, Jenny Eliscu, "Oops...she's doing it again", The Observer, 16 Sep 2001 ↗
      She's wearing inky-blue jeans that ride low enough on her hips that her aquamarine thong peeks out teasingly at the back.
  14. (lacrosse) To play defense on the defensemen or midfielders, as an attackman.
  15. To manage insolently at will; to domineer over.
    • 1731, Jonathan Swift, The Presbyterians Plea of Merit
      The nobility […] could no longer endure to be ridden by bakers, coblers[sic], brewers, and the like.
  16. (surgery) To overlap (each other); said of bones or fractured fragments.
  17. (radio, television, transitive) To monitor (some component of an audiovisual signal) in order to keep it within acceptable bounds.
    • , Radio Jockey Handbook
      The board operator normally watches the meter scale marked for modulation percentage, riding the gain to bring volume peaks into the 85% to 100% range.
    • 2017, Michael O'Connell, Turn Up the Volume: A Down and Dirty Guide to Podcasting (page 22)
      “You don't want them riding the volume knob, so that's why you learn how to do your levels properly to make the whole thing transparent for the listener. […]
  18. (music) In jazz, a steady rhythmical style.
Synonyms Translations Translations
  • French: monter en, à
  • German: fahren
  • Portuguese: andar de, pegar
  • Russian: (concrete) еха́ть
Translations Translations Noun

ride (plural rides)

  1. An instance of riding.
    Can I have a ride on your bike?
    We took the horses for an early-morning ride in the woods.
  2. (informal) A vehicle.
    That's a nice ride; what did it cost?
  3. An amusement ridden at a fair or amusement park.
  4. A lift given to someone in another person's vehicle.
    Can you give me a ride?
  5. (UK) A road or avenue cut in a wood, for riding; a bridleway or other wide country path.
  6. (UK, dialect, archaic) A saddle horse.
  7. (Ireland) A person (or sometimes a thing or a place) that is visually attractive.
    • 2007 July 14, Michael O'Neill, Re: More mouthy ineffectual poseurs...[was Re: Live Earth - One Of The Most Important Events On This Particular Planet - don't let SCI distract you, in soc.culture.irish, Usenet:
      Absolutely, and I agree about Madonna. An absolute ride *still*. :-) M.
  8. (music) In jazz, to play in a steady rhythmical style.
    • 2000, Max Harrison, ‎Charles Fox, ‎Eric Thacker, The Essential Jazz Records: Modernism to postmodernism (page 238)
      The quintet in Propheticape muses out-of-measured-time until Holland leads it into swift, riding jazz.
Translations Translations Translations Translations
  • Portuguese: carona (Brazil), boleia (Portugal), bigu
  • Russian: подво́з
  • Spanish: rait (phonetic cognate of ride), autoestop, aventón (colloquial)

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