—n. 1. one of a series of curved bones that are articulated with the vertebrae and occur in pairs, 12 in humans, on each side of the vertebrate body, certain pairs being connected with the sternum and forming the thoracic wall. See diag. under skeleton. 2. a cut of meat, as beef, containing a rib. See diag. under beef. 3. ribs,spareribs (def. 2).
4. Archit. a. any of several archlike members of a vault supporting it at the groins, defining its distinct surfaces, or dividing these surfaces into panels: including ogives and tiercerons.
b. any of several molded members or moldings, including ridge ribs and liernes, on the surface of a vault accenting the ridges or dividing the surface into panels.
5. something resembling a rib in form, position, or use, as a supporting or strengthening part.
6. a structural member that supports the shape of something: an umbrella rib. 7. Naut.any of the curved framing members in a ship's hull that rise upward and outward from the keel; frame.
8. a stiffening beam cast as part of a concrete slab.
9. a primary vein of a leaf.
10. a vertical ridge in cloth, esp. in knitted fabrics.
11. a ridge, as in poplin or rep, caused by heavy yarn.
12. a wife (in humorous allusion to the creation of Eve. Gen. 2:21–22).
13. Ceram.a scraper for smoothing clay being thrown on a potter's wheel.
14. a metal ridge running along the top of the barrel of a firearm to simplify aligning the sights.
15. a longitudinal strip of metal joining the barrels of a double-barreled gun.
—v.t. 1. to furnish or strengthen with ribs.
2. to enclose as with ribs.
3. to mark with riblike ridges or markings.
Pronunciation: (rib),[key] —v.t.,ribbed, rib•bing. to tease; make fun of.