1 [with object] strike (a hard surface) with a series of rapid audible blows, especially in order to attract attention:he stood up and rapped the table [no object]:she rapped angrily on the window
strike (something) against a hard surface with rapid audible blows:she rapped her stick on the floor
strike (someone or something) sharply with stick or similar implement:she rapped my fingers with a ruler
informal rebuke or criticize sharply:executives rapped the U.S. for having too little competition in international phone service
say sharply or suddenly:the ambassador rapped out an order
2 [no object] informal, chiefly North American talk or chat in an easy and familiar manner:we could be here all night rapping about the finer points of spiritualism
3 [no object] perform rap music.
1a quick, sharp knock or blow:there was a confident rap at the door
2a type of popular music of US black origin in which words are recited rapidly and rhythmically over a prerecorded, typically electronic instrumental backing.
a piece of music performed in rap style, or the words themselves.
3 informal, chiefly North American a talk or discussion, especially a lengthy or impromptu one:dropping in after work for a rap over a beer [as modifier]:a rap session
4 [usually with adjective]North American informal a criminal charge, especially of a specified kind:he’s just been acquitted on a murder rap
North American informal a person or thing’s reputation, typically a bad one:there’s no reason why drag queens should get a bad rap
beat the rap
North American informal escape punishment for or be acquitted of a crime.
a rap on the knuckles
rap someone on the knuckles
rebuke or criticize someone.
take the rap
informal be punished or blamed, especially for something that is not one’s fault or for which others are equally responsible.
Middle English (originally in the senses 'severe blow with a weapon' and 'deliver a heavy blow'): probably imitative and of Scandinavian origin; compare with Swedish rappa 'beat, drub', also with clap1 and flap