1a tall, slender-leaved plant of the grass family that grows in water or on marshy ground.
Genera Phragmites and Arundo, family Gramineae: several species, in particular the common (or Norfolk) reed (P. australis), which is used for thatching
used in names of plants similar to reeds, growing in wet habitats, e.g., bur reed.
the tall, thin, straight stalk of a reed, used especially as material for thatching.
[often as modifier] reeds growing in a mass or used as material, especially for making thatch or household items:a reed curtainclumps of reed and grass
literary a rustic musical pipe made from a reed or from straw.
2a thing or person resembling or likened to a reed, in particular.
a weak or impressionable person:the jurors were mere reeds in the wind
literary an arrow.
a weaver’s comblike implement for separating the threads of the warp and correctly positioning the weft.
(reeds) semicylindrical adjacent moldings grouped like reeds laid together.
3a piece of thin cane or metal, sometimes doubled, that vibrates in a current of air to produce the sound of various musical instruments, as in the mouthpiece of a clarinet or oboe, at the base of some organ pipes, and as part of a set in the accordion and harmonica.
a wind instrument played with a reed.
an organ stop with reed pipes.
4an electrical contact used in a magnetically operated switch or relay.