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RUB, verb transitive [Latin probrum, exprobro; Gr. to rub We have the elements of the word in scrape, scrub, Latin scribo, Gr.]

1. To move something along the surface of a body with pressure; as, to rub the face or arms with the hand; to rub the body with flannel. Vessels are scoured or cleaned by rubbing them.

2. To wipe; to clean; to scour; but rub is a generic term, applicable to friction for every purpose.

3. To touch so as to leave behind something which touches; to spread over; as to rub any thing with oil.

4. To polish; to retouch; with over.

The whole business of our redemption is to rub over the defaced copy of the creation.

5. To obstruct by collision. [Unusual.]

In popular language, rub is used for teasing, fretting, upbraiding, reproaching or vexing with gibes or sarcasms.

To rub down, to clean by rubbing; to comb or curry, as a horse.

To rub off, to clean any thing by rubbing; to separate by friction; as, to rub off rust.

1. To rub out, to erase; to obliterate; as, to rub out marks or letters.

2. To remove or separate by friction; as, to rub out a stain.

To rub upon, to touch hard.

1. To rub up, to burnish; to polish; to clean.

2. To excite; to awaken; to rouse to action; as, to rub up the memory.

RUB, verb intransitive

1. To move along the surface of a body with pressure; as, a wheel rubs against the gate-post.

2. To fret; to chafe; as, to rub upon a sore.

3. To move or pass with difficulty; as, to rub through woods, as huntsmen; to rub through the world.

RUB, noun

1. The act of rubbing; friction.

2. That which renders motion or progress difficult; collision; hinderance; obstruction.

Now every rub is smoothed in our way.

Upon this rub the English embassadors thought fit to demur.

All sort of rubs will be laid in the way.

3. Inequality of ground that hinders the motion of a bowl.

4. Difficulty; cause of uneasiness; pinch.

To sleep, perchance to dream; ay, there's the rub

5. Sarcasm; joke; something grating to the feelings.


RUB'-STONE, noun [rub and stone.] A stone, usually some kind of sandstone, used to sharpen instruments; a whetstone.