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

  • n. A circular object, form, line, or arrangement with a vacant circular center.
  • n. A small circular band, generally made of precious metal and often set with jewels, worn on the finger.
  • n. A circular band used for carrying, holding, or containing something: a napkin ring.
  • n. Sports A pair of circular metal bands suspended in the air for gymnastic exercises, on which balancing and swinging maneuvers are performed while holding the bands as motionless as possible.
  • n. A circular movement or course, as in dancing.
  • n. An enclosed, usually circular area in which exhibitions, sports, or contests take place: a circus ring.
  • n. Sports A rectangular arena set off by stakes and ropes in which boxing or wrestling events are held.
  • n. Sports The sport of boxing.
  • n. Games An enclosed area in which bets are placed at a racetrack.
  • n. Games Bookmakers considered as a group.
  • n. An exclusive group of people acting privately or illegally to advance their own interests: a drug ring.
  • n. A political contest; a race.
  • n. Botany An annual ring.
  • n. Mathematics The area between two concentric circles; annulus.
  • n. Mathematics A set of elements subject to the operations of addition and multiplication, in which the set is an abelian group under addition and associative under multiplication and in which the two operations are related by distributive laws.
  • n. Any of the turns constituting a spiral or helix.
  • n. Chemistry A group of atoms linked by bonds that may be represented graphically in circular or triangular form. Also called closed chain.
  • transitive v. To surround with or as if with a ring; encircle. See Synonyms at surround.
  • transitive v. To form into a ring or rings.
  • transitive v. To ornament or supply with a ring or rings: ringed the door knocker with a wreath of holly.
  • transitive v. To remove a circular strip of bark around the circumference of (a tree trunk or branch); girdle.
  • transitive v. To put a ring in the nose of (an animal).
  • transitive v. To hem in (animals) by riding in a circle around them.
  • transitive v. Games To toss a ring over (a peg), as in horseshoes.
  • intransitive v. To form a ring or rings.
  • intransitive v. To move, run, or fly in a spiral or circular course.
  • intransitive v. To give forth a clear resonant sound.
  • intransitive v. To cause something to ring.
  • intransitive v. To sound a bell in order to summon someone: I'll ring for the maid.
  • intransitive v. To have a sound or character suggestive of a particular quality: a story that rings true.
  • intransitive v. To be filled with sound; resound: The room rang with the children's laughter.
  • intransitive v. To hear a persistent humming or buzzing: My ears were ringing from the sound of the blast.
  • intransitive v. To be filled with talk or rumor: The whole town rang with the bad news.
  • transitive v. To cause (a bell, for example) to ring.
  • transitive v. To produce (a sound) by or as if by ringing.
  • transitive v. To announce, proclaim, or signal by or as if by ringing: a clock that rings the hour.
  • transitive v. Chiefly British To call (someone) on the telephone. Often used with up: She rang me at noon. Let's ring her up and invite her.
  • transitive v. To test (a coin, for example) for quality by the sound it produces when struck against something.
  • n. The sound created by a bell or another sonorous vibrating object.
  • n. A loud sound, especially one that is repeated or continued.
  • n. A telephone call: Give me a ring when you have time.
  • n. A suggestion of a particular quality: His offer has a suspicious ring.
  • n. A set of bells.
  • n. The act or an instance of sounding a bell.
  • ring up To record, especially by means of a cash register: ring up a sale.
  • ring up To accomplish or achieve; win: rang up several consecutive victories.
  • idiom ring a bell Informal To arouse an often indistinct memory.
  • idiom ring down the curtain To end a performance, event, or action.
  • idiom chimes Slang To knock (an opponent) out by physical or other force.
  • idiom ring up the curtain To begin a performance, event, or action.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. A circumscribing object, (roughly) circular and hollow, looking like an annual ring, earring, finger ring etc.
  • n. A round piece of (precious) metal worn around the finger.
  • n. A bird band, a round piece of metal put around a bird's leg used for identification and studies of migration.
  • n. A piece of food in the shape of a ring, as in onion ring
  • n. A place where some sports or exhibitions take place; notably a circular or comparable arena, such as a boxing ring or a circus ring; hence the field of a political contest.
  • n. An exclusive group of people, usually involving some unethical or illegal practices; as a crime ring, prostitution ring, etc.
  • n. A planar geometrical figure included between two concentric circles.
  • n. Burner.
  • n. A formation of various pieces of material orbiting around a planet.
  • n. A diacritical mark in the shape of a hollow circle placed above or under the letter; a kroužek.
  • n. An old English measure of corn equal to the coomb or half a quarter.
  • n. a large circular prehistoric stone construction such as Stonehenge.
  • n. A hierarchical level of privilege in a computer system, usually at hardware level, used to protect data and functionality (also protection ring).
  • n. In a jack plug, the connector between the tip and the sleeve.
  • v. To surround or enclose.
  • v. To make an incision around; to girdle.
  • v. To attach a ring to, especially for identification.
  • v. To rise in the air spirally.
  • n. The resonant sound of a bell, or a sound resembling it.
  • n. A pleasant or correct sound.
  • n. A telephone call.
  • v. Of a bell, to produce sound; to make a bell produce sound.
  • v. To produce the sound of a bell or a similar sound.
  • v. Of something spoken or written, to appear to be, to seem, to sound.
  • v. To telephone someone.
  • v. to resound, reverberate, echo
  • n. An algebraic structure which consists of a set with two binary operations, an additive operation and a multiplicative operation, such that the set is an abelian group under the additive operation, a monoid under the multiplicative operation, and such that the multiplicative operation is distributive with respect to the additive operation.
  • n. An algebraic structure as above, but only required to be a semigroup under the multiplicative operation, that is, there need not be a multiplicative identity element.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. A sound; especially, the sound of vibrating metals.
  • n. Any loud sound; the sound of numerous voices; a sound continued, repeated, or reverberated.
  • n. A chime, or set of bells harmonically tuned.
  • n. A circle, or a circular line, or anything in the form of a circular line or hoop.
  • n. Specifically, a circular ornament of gold or other precious material worn on the finger, or attached to the ear, the nose, or some other part of the person.
  • n. A circular area in which races are or run or other sports are performed; an arena.
  • n. An inclosed space in which pugilists fight; hence, figuratively, prize fighting.
  • n. A circular group of persons.
  • n.
  • n. The plane figure included between the circumferences of two concentric circles.
  • n. The solid generated by the revolution of a circle, or other figure, about an exterior straight line (as an axis) lying in the same plane as the circle or other figure.
  • n. An instrument, formerly used for taking the sun's altitude, consisting of a brass ring suspended by a swivel, with a hole at one side through which a solar ray entering indicated the altitude on the graduated inner surface opposite.
  • n. An elastic band partly or wholly encircling the spore cases of ferns. See Illust. of Sporangium.
  • n. A clique; an exclusive combination of persons for a selfish purpose, as to control the market, distribute offices, obtain contracts, etc.
  • intransitive v. To sound, as a bell or other sonorous body, particularly a metallic one.
  • intransitive v. To practice making music with bells.
  • intransitive v. To sound loud; to resound; to be filled with a ringing or reverberating sound.
  • intransitive v. To continue to sound or vibrate; to resound.
  • intransitive v. To be filled with report or talk.
  • intransitive v. To rise in the air spirally.
  • transitive v. To cause to sound, especially by striking, as a metallic body.
  • transitive v. To make (a sound), as by ringing a bell; to sound.
  • transitive v. To repeat often, loudly, or earnestly.
  • transitive v. To surround with a ring, or as with a ring; to encircle.
  • transitive v. To make a ring around by cutting away the bark; to girdle.
  • transitive v. To fit with a ring or with rings, as the fingers, or a swine's snout.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • To be round about in the form of a circle; form a ring about; encircle; encompass; gird.
  • To take a position around; surround; hence, to hem in; specifically, in Australia, to keep (cattle) together, by riding around them in a circle.
  • In the manège, to exercise by causing to run round in a ring while being held by a long rein; lunge.
  • To provide with a ring or rings; mark or decorate with rings; especially, to fit with a metallic ring, as the finger, or as an animal or its nose; also, to furnish with rings, or attach rings to, for the line to run in, as an anglers' rod.
  • To wed with a marriage-ring.
  • In horticulture, to cut out a ring of bark from, as from a branch or root, in order to obstruct the return of the sap and oblige it to accumulate above the part operated on.
  • To ring a quoit, to throw it so that it encircles the pin.
  • To form a ring.
  • To move in rings or in a constantly curving course.
  • To cause (a bell or other sonorous body, usually metallic) to sound, particularly by striking.
  • To produce by or as by ringing, as a sound or peal.
  • To announce or celebrate by ringing; usher with ringing, as of bells; hence, to proclaim or introduce musically: often followed by in or out.
  • To utter sonorously; repeat often, loudly, or earnestly; sound: as, to ring one's praises.
  • Hence— (also
  • To give forth a musical, resonant, and metallic sound; resound, as a bell or other sonorous body when set in sudden vibration by a blow or otherwise: as, the anvil rang.
  • To ring a bell; especially, to give a signal with a bell: as, to ring for a servant or a messenger.
  • To sound loudly and clearly, like the tone of a bell; be distinctly audible: as, the music still rings in our ears.
  • To resound; reverberate; echo.
  • To have the sensation of a continued humming or buzzing sound: as, to make one's head ring.
  • To exercise or follow the art of bell-ringing.
  • To be filled with report or talk: as, the whole town rings with his fame.
  • To be widely heard of or known; be celebrated.
  • To circle around (the game) in order to catch the scent: said of a field-dog.
  • In printing, to draw a ring around, as an unmarked change in type, on a proof.
  • To make the best score in shearing sheep. See ringer, 3.
  • n. A circular body with a comparatively large central circular opening.
  • n. Hence— A circular group; a circular disposition of persons or things.
  • n. One of the circular layers of wood acquired periodically by many growing trees. See annual ring, below.
  • n. In geometry: The area or space between two concentric circles.
  • n. An anallagmatic surface; an anchor-ring.
  • n. A circle or circular line.
  • n. A limiting boundary; compass.
  • n. A constantly curving line; a helix.
  • n. A circular or oval or even square area; an arena.
  • n. The inclosure in which pugilists fight, usually a square area marked off by a rope and stakes.
  • n. The betting-arena on a race-course.
  • n. The space in which horses are exhibited or exercised at a cattle-show or market, or on a public promenade.
  • n. A combination of persons for attaining such objects as the controlling of the market in stocks, or the price of a commodity, or the effecting of personal and selfish (especially corrupt) ends, as by the control of political or legislative agencies.
  • n. In the language of produce-exchanges, a device to simplify the settlement of contracts for delivery, where the same quantity of a commodity is called for by several contracts, the buyer in one being the seller in another, the object of the ring being to fill all contracts by delivery made by the first seller to the last buyer.
  • n. In architecture: A list, cincture, or annulet round a column.
  • n. An archivolt, in its specific sense of the arch proper.
  • n. An instrument formerly used for taking the sun's altitude, etc., consisting of a ring, usually of brass, suspended by a swivel, with a hole in one side, through which a solar ray entering indicated the altitude upon the inner graduated concave surface. Compare ring-dial.
  • n. In angling, a guide.
  • n. In anatomy and zoology, an annulus; any circular part or structure like a ring or hoop: as, a tracheal ring (one of the circular hoop-like cartilages of the windpipe); a somitic ring (an annular somite, as one of the segments of a worm); a ring of color.
  • n. In botany, same as annulus.
  • n. A commercial measure of staves, or wood prepared for casks, containing four shocks, or 240 pieces.
  • n. The sound of a bell or other sonorous body, usually metallic; the sound produced by striking metal; a clang; a peal.
  • n. Any loud sound, or the sounds of numerous voices; sound continued, repeated, or reverberated.
  • n. Characteristic sound.
  • n. A set of bells tuned to each other; a chime, peal, or carillon.
  • n. In salt-making, a fire-brick arch of varying length, placed under the evaporating-pans to temper the heat and so prevent the salt from being burned.
  • n. A circular device, with a lip or flange upon which an elliptical clip called a traveler runs, for twisting and winding the yarn on a bobbin, on a ring-spinning machine.
  • n. A section of tan-bark, usually 4 feet long.
  • n. In cricket, the boundary; the limits of the field of play: so called because in some cases the cricket-field is oval or round.
  • n. In chem., same as closed chain.

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

  • v. ring or echo with sound
  • v. sound loudly and sonorously
  • n. the sound of a bell ringing
  • n. a rigid circular band of metal or wood or other material used for holding or fastening or hanging or pulling
  • n. a strip of material attached to the leg of a bird to identify it (as in studies of bird migration)
  • v. make (bells) ring, often for the purposes of musical edification
  • n. (chemistry) a chain of atoms in a molecule that forms a closed loop
  • n. jewelry consisting of a circlet of precious metal (often set with jewels) worn on the finger
  • n. a characteristic sound
  • v. extend on all sides of simultaneously; encircle
  • n. a toroidal shape
  • n. an association of criminals
  • v. get or try to get into communication (with someone) by telephone
  • v. attach a ring to the foot of, in order to identify
  • n. a platform usually marked off by ropes in which contestants box or wrestle


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

Middle English, from Old English hring; see sker-.
Middle English ringen, from Old English hringan.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

From Middle English ring, ryng, also rink, rynk, from Old English hring, hrincg ("ring, link of chain, fetter, festoon, anything circular, circle, circular group, border, horizon, corselet, circuit (of a year), cycle, course, orb, globe"), from Proto-Germanic *hringaz (“circle”), from Proto-Indo-European *(s)krengh- (“to turn, bend”). Akin to Scots ring ("ring"), West Frisian ring ("ring"), Saterland Frisian Ring ("ring, circle"), Dutch ring ("ring, hoop"), Low German Ring ("ring"), German Ring ("ring, circle"), Swedish ring ("ring, circle"), Icelandic hringur ("ring"), Umbrian krenkatrum, cringatro ("belt"), Proto-Slavic *krǫgъ (“circle”) (Russian круг (krug)), Old English hrung ("cross-bar, spoke"), Albanian vrangull ("a wheel-shaped tool, circle motion"), rreng ("to do a prank, cheat, deceive"). More at rung.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

Verb is from Old English hringan, from Proto-Germanic *hringijanan. Cognate with Albanian vring ("a high-pitched sound made by waving violently a solid object").

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

A shortening of German Zahlring ("number(s) ring"); coined by mathematician David Hilbert in 1892. (Reference: Harvey Cohn, Advanced Number Theory, page 49.)


  • With the genitive to be supplied: brēac þonne mōste, 1488; imp. brūc þisses bēages, _enjoy this ring, take this ring_, 1217.


  • With the genitive to be supplied: breác þonne môste, 1488; imp. brûc þisses beáges, _enjoy this ring, take this ring_, 1217.


  • Brantefield's cause of belief, first: her ladyship declared that she never wore Sir Josseline's ring without putting on after it a _guard ring_, a ring which, being tighter than Sir Josseline's, kept it safe on her finger.

    Tales and Novels — Volume 09

  • They call the house. * ring ring ring* Burglar hears the answering machine pick up and goes, "Oh, awesome, empty house."


  • I can't really complain since it's my own decision and I'm going back to Hafnarfjörður with a spanking new, albeit overpriced due to run amok inflation, bike. * ring ring*


  • "It's really something to play for Carolina," said Worthy, who keeps his title ring in a safe.

    Sports News :

  • I think the title ring is going to end up with the Steelers, regardless.

    Blog updates

  • He has never worn the title ring from that 2006 Rose Bowl victory over USC, during which he held a clipboard on the sidelines as a redshirting freshman and charted Vince Young's plays.

    Statesman - AP Sports

  • Structural support of this ring is the second stage in the structure that is also very important.

    The cupola: Spain's gift to Mexico's colonial architecture

  • He calls Stefan asking where his ring is and tells Stefan that the dead bodies will be on him until his ring is returned.

    OBS RECAPS & REVIEWS: VAMPIRE DIARIES S1 – EPISODE 6: LOST GIRLS | Open Society Book Club Discussions and Reviews


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  • "In salt-making, a fire-brick arch of varying length, placed under the evaporating-pans to temper the heat and so prevent the salt from being burned."

    --from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

    September 27, 2017

  • Contronymic in the sense: ring in, trap vs. release, ring out, peal.

    January 26, 2007