There are 2 definitions of rap in English:

rap1

Syllabification: rap

verb (raps, rapping, rapped)

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
More example sentences
  • At that moment Peach looked their way and rapped on the table with a jeweled rod.
  • Pat anxiously rapped on each of the windows, concerned that occupants of the home might have been trapped inside.
  • When the man didn't seem to notice, Joey rapped on the counter hard.
Synonyms
hit, strike
informal whack, thwack, bash, wallop
literary smite
1.1Strike (something) against a hard surface with rapid audible blows: she rapped her stick on the floor
More example sentences
  • She rapped the ruler even harder on my desk and returned to the blackboard and continued talking about parabolas.
  • He rapped his walking stick hard on the dirty cobblestone path, three times in quick succession.
  • Mia knocked loudly on the door, rapping her knuckles hard against the steel wall that separated her from her boyfriend.
Synonyms
knock, tap, bang, hammer, pound
1.2Strike (someone or something) sharply with stick or similar implement: she rapped my fingers with a ruler
More example sentences
  • The combination of the cold and the force of the blow was incredibly painful, but I gritted my teeth and whirled around, rapping him sharply on the knees.
  • My father cussed, brandishing a fallen stick and rapping him across his haunches.
  • Franki took a spoon and rapped Bridget over the head with it sharply.
1.3 informal Rebuke or criticize sharply: executives rapped the U.S. for having too little competition in international phone service
More example sentences
  • At the 1998 Nagano Olympics, he was rapped by Bazay for criticizing the selection of freestyle skier Jean-Luc Brassard as Canada's flag-bearer.
1.4Say 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
More example sentences
  • Jean Grae responds, and then she raps about baseball, sounding like a natural.
  • Just call her up to rap about it.
3 [no object] Perform rap music.
More example sentences
  • Here, instead of trying to match their vocals to pop music, players must rap along to a large group of hip-hop favorites.
  • The event was a fantastic success with students dancing, rapping and performing poetry against racism.
  • While it mainly relies on the music, when Tefrey does decide to rap, he demands your attention.

noun

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1A quick, sharp knock or blow: there was a confident rap at the door
More example sentences
  • A sharp rap at the door of the dressing room broke the two out of their romantic interlude.
  • Three sharp raps at the door interrupted his speech and Ben looked helplessly to Marie.
  • A sharp rap at the door made the quartet's heads turn simultaneously toward the door.
Synonyms
blow, hit, knock, bang, crack
informal whack, thwack, bash, wallop
knock, tap, rat-tat, bang, hammering, pounding
2A type of popular music of US black origin in which words are recited rapidly and rhythmically over a prerecorded, typically electronic instrumental backing.
More example sentences
  • Both fans of techno and fans of rap music should enjoy this album.
  • She was listening rock music and rap from a small black radio that was next to her.
  • The book is well written, carefully researched, and nicely organized, and its study of the early origins of rap is fascinating.
2.1A piece of music performed in rap style, or the words themselves.
More example sentences
  • Big Boi's raps are, as always, inventive, the words tumbling out with speed and bite.
  • Their raps may be blazing, but the melodies deliberately evoke early Beach Boys memories.
  • Vordul's verse is uninspiring and sounds much more like spoken word poetry, rather than a proper rap.
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
More example sentences
  • He's pretty quiet at the hall meetings and the rap group sessions.
  • So whenever Hilary has any of her cronies over, I have to suffer through a rap session blaring from her room.
  • In a calm, cool, and extremely friendly way, hold a rap session with your dancers and their parents.
4 [usually with adjective] North American informal A criminal charge, especially of a specified kind: he’s just been acquitted on a murder rap
More example sentences
  • What about the career criminal scheduled for lethal injection because a fellow inmate pinned a murder rap on him in exchange for time off?
  • Other panelists then joined in discussing whether, if true, this would suggest a perjury rap for him.
  • You go into a bar and end up in a fight, one of the two will complain and the other will get an assault rap.
4.1North American informal A person or thing’s reputation, typically a bad one: there’s no reason why drag queens should get a bad rap
More example sentences
  • And I'm not going to lose a lot of sleep thinking they got a bad rap for this woman's execution.
  • Oppression, foreign occupation, and military dictatorships get a bad rap.
  • I think they get a bad rap in history because they were the losers.

Origin

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.

Phrases

beat the rap

North American informal Escape punishment for or be acquitted of a crime.
More example sentences
  • Pearson's book reveals the unseemly tactics that accused women use to beat the rap.
  • She beat the rap in August, acquitted of all charges by a federal jury in Memphis.
  • Even before the crimes were committed, the White House was planning how to beat the rap.

a rap on the knuckles

A reprimand.
More example sentences
  • Switzerland's not being invited looks like a rap on the knuckles.
  • The PNG government, however, rapidly received a rap over the knuckles from Washington.
  • Countries who want to skimp on paying for the European Union got a rap on the knuckles from Parliament president Pat Cox.

rap someone on the knuckles

Rebuke or criticize someone.
More example sentences
  • Mayo County Council has been rapped on the knuckles by An Bord Pleanála for failing to provide adequate services to areas which have the potential to be properly developed.
  • Standard Life has been rapped over the knuckles by the Financial Ombudsman for turning down claims by policyholders who got their weight wrong on application forms.
  • One observer said: ‘If they did rap Fisher over the knuckles then no one got to know about it.’

take the rap

informal Be punished or blamed, especially for something that is not one’s fault or for which others are equally responsible.
More example sentences
  • President Kennedy was told the Bay of Pigs would go smoothly and then he took the rap.
  • Most of them are happy to use the bureaucratic machinery to escape from taking the rap.
  • I would say that he is taking the rap for it anyway, short of being the scapegoat.
Synonyms
be punished, take the blame, suffer, suffer the consequences, pay, pay the price

Definition of rap in:

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There are 2 definitions of rap in English:

rap2

Syllabification: rap

noun

[in singular, with negative]
The smallest amount (used to add emphasis to a statement): he doesn’t care a rap whether it’s true or not

Origin

early 19th century: from Irish ropaire 'robber'; used as the name of a counterfeit coin in 18th-century Ireland.

Definition of rap in: