Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition.

  • noun A descent of a vertical surface, as a cliff or wall, by sliding down a belayed rope that is passed under one thigh and over the opposite shoulder or through a device that provides friction, typically while facing the surface and performing a series of short backward leaps to control the descent.
  • intransitive verb To descend from a steep height by this method.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • noun The roll or beat of the drum to call soldiers to arms.
  • noun An ancient musical instrument, still used in Egypt, consisting of a ring to which are attached small bells or metal plates, forming a sort of rattle.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English.

  • noun (Mil.) The beat of the drum to call soldiers to arms.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

  • noun military The beat of the drum to call soldiers to arms.
  • noun Descending by means of a rope, abseiling.
  • verb obsolete to call back a hawk
  • verb to abseil

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • verb lower oneself with a rope coiled around the body from a mountainside
  • noun (mountaineering) a descent of a vertical cliff or wall made by using a doubled rope that is fixed to a higher point and wrapped around the body

Etymologies

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

[French, recall, return, rappel, from Old French, recall, from rapeler, to recall : re-, re- + apeler, to summon; see appeal.]

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

French. Compare repeal.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

French rappeler ("to pull through (a rope)")

Examples

  • Reports now indicate that Navy seals were used to rappel down from helicopers onto the apartment compound.

    A good M�xico news site

  • Reports now indicate that Navy seals were used to rappel down from helicopers onto the apartment compound.

    A good M�xico news site

  • Tuesday, September 21, 2010 un rappel un rappel (rah pel) noun, masculine

    French Word-A-Day

  • Soon after the school opened, I signed up and learned how to belay and rappel, and about the play of rock climbing on the senses: the clink of the hammer on a piton, the warmth of the sunlit granite under my hand, the radiant clouds sailing overhead.

    Yosemite's Rock Stars

  • There was just enough slack in the umbilical to allow him to plant his feet on the railing and lean back as if he was about to rappel into the water.

    Gideon’s war

  • And the easiest thing on it is a hard 5.9. yeah, I had my ass kicked, but afterwards we ate pizza, and I did learn to rappel.

    it's amazing how much being hard at work can look like staring out the window between watching youtu

  • There was just enough slack in the umbilical to allow him to plant his feet on the railing and lean back as if he was about to rappel into the water.

    Gideon’s war

  • But now Michelle has a problem she can't blame on her competitors: She must rappel down the side of a skyscraper, and she's afraid of heights.

    Tonight's TV Hot List: Monday, Jan. 24, 2011

  • And it turns out that Cashman's decisions last winter to rappel down buildings in Stamford, Conn., and guest bartend at charity events had little to do with whether he wanted to remain as general manager of the Yankees.

    Yanks Lock Up the Architect, a Day After the Ace

  • It was a 5.7 on a big old slab, and The Jeff had to rappel down to set it (he is so very multitalented) and I am grateful, because hey!

    if we got married, would that be cool?

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