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Crossword clues for rat

Longman Dictionary of Contemporary English
get out of/quit the rat race
▪ the story of a couple who quit the rat race
love rat
pack rat
rat race
▪ the story of a couple who quit the rat race
rat run
▪ The road has become a rat run for traffic avoiding the town centre.
rats' tails
water rat
▪ The omnivorous black rat consumes seeds, flowers and fruits, and many small animals.
▪ The black rat was far more of a town-dwelling species and dependent on human food.
▪ What is life for the 10,000 black rats living in Deshnok temple?
▪ Blackrag Madonna is blind as a dead rat.
▪ Here and there, dead rats and other corpses float on the scum.
▪ It was nothing but the stench of dead, rotting rats and of bats' dung.
▪ The area was so poor that even the dead rats in the street looked as though they had died of hunger.
▪ Fleas desert a dead rat faster than rats desert a sinking ship, and that makes sense.
▪ There was a dead rat, blown almost in two, resting on the hearth of the fire.
▪ I walked up and down on the bed, to control my trembling legs, and looked at the dead rat.
▪ She was delighted that I was not hurt, and threw the dead rat out of the window.
▪ Each cage held at least one white rat.
▪ I would try to elude notice, but I stood out like a white rat at a tomcat convention.
▪ I suspected they were pack rats because they were too smart to get themselves caught in the traps I set for them.
▪ He said he only wanted to kill himself and claimed he ate rat poison and planned to inhale car exhaust fumes.
▪ Somewhere in Ohio a doctor has been jailed for feeding rat poison to his colleagues.
▪ The rat poison and insecticide was taken from a van at Farm lane in Crawley near Witney.
▪ Gullible hadn't been driving a great big lorry around the place and putting down rat poison.
▪ Just himself and Eloise, a cleaver, a gun, a spoonful of rat poison.
▪ Edinburgh Sheriff Court had heard that the boys bought the rat poison from Boots, and offered to cook dinner.
▪ Underneath the sink he found a large tin of rat poison.
▪ He would go down into the cellar tomorrow and put down some rat poison.
▪ Children are forced into the rat race for higher salary and prestige.
▪ An executive from an international chemical company has given up the rat race to run a plant nursery.
▪ Too much of a rat race.
▪ Life is a rat race. 35.
▪ At least we would be out of the rat race until I had worked up some seniority in my job.
▪ It is enough to make you smell a rat and be damned for your cynicism.
▪ He could smell a rat, and he knew just how the men had been cheated.
▪ I only began to smell a rat when he couldn't come up with the documents he claimed to have.
▪ Suffice to say, we smell a rat.
▪ She felt that he was beginning to smell a rat.
▪ I smell a rat here - I really do.
▪ Niki smelled the rat and said unless his driving contract were honoured, he would move to McLaren.
a plague of rats/locusts etc
▪ From Tracy Luv to Sarah-Lou, Corrie kids are as well-behaved as a plague of locusts.
▪ I wonder what really causes a plague of rats?
in rats' tails
smell a rat
▪ The investor doesn't start to smell a rat until the payments aren't coming in.
▪ We started to smell a rat when they asked for an extra £500 deposit.
▪ He could smell a rat, and he knew just how the men had been cheated.
▪ I smell a rat here - I really do.
▪ I only began to smell a rat when he couldn't come up with the documents he claimed to have.
▪ It is enough to make you smell a rat and be damned for your cynicism.
▪ She felt that he was beginning to smell a rat.
▪ Suffice to say, we smell a rat.
the rat race
▪ This is a good way to get back at that rat Yossarian.
▪ But the immature brain cells were the most effective treatment in the rats, says Sandberg.
▪ He ran on laughing, used to having rats thrown at him.
▪ Old steamboats with their scrollwork more scrolled and withered by weathers sat in the mud inhabited by rats.
▪ The rat weights did not differ between the groups.
▪ The rats eventually managed to press the lever very quickly after being placed in the box, in order to receive their reward.
▪ The rats must have learned the maze earlier and were demonstrating latent learning.
▪ The electrodes gave the rats access to their own stores of bliss-producing neurotransmitters.
a plague of rats/locusts etc
▪ From Tracy Luv to Sarah-Lou, Corrie kids are as well-behaved as a plague of locusts.
▪ I wonder what really causes a plague of rats?
in rats' tails
the rat race
▪ After that you ratted or rotted.
▪ I have to rat all he has reet.
▪ Looks like Rico got in on it, then decided like he was gon na rat to Spider.
The Collaborative International Dictionary

Rat \Rat\ (r[a^]t), n. [AS. r[ae]t; akin to D. rat, OHG. rato, ratta, G. ratte, ratze, OLG. ratta, LG. & Dan. rotte, Sw. r[*a]tta, F. rat, Ir. & Gael radan, Armor. raz, of unknown origin. Cf. Raccoon.]

  1. (Zo["o]l.) One of several species of small rodents of the genus Rattus (formerly included in Mus) and allied genera, of the family Muridae, distinguished from mice primarily by being larger. They infest houses, stores, and ships, especially the Norway rat, also called brown rat, ( Rattus norvegicus formerly Mus decumanus), the black rat ( Rattus rattus formerly Mus rattus), and the roof rat (formerly Mus Alexandrinus, now included in Rattus rattus). These were introduced into America from the Old World. The white rat used most commonly in laboratories is primarily a strain derived from Rattus rattus.

  2. A round and tapering mass of hair, or similar material, used by women to support the puffs and rolls of their natural hair. [Local, U.S.]

  3. One who deserts his party or associates; hence, in the trades, one who works for lower wages than those prescribed by a trades union. [Cant] Note: ``It so chanced that, not long after the accession of the house of Hanover, some of the brown, that is the German or Norway, rats, were first brought over to this country (in some timber as is said); and being much stronger than the black, or, till then, the common, rats, they in many places quite extirpated the latter. The word (both the noun and the verb to rat) was first, as we have seen, leveled at the converts to the government of George the First, but has by degrees obtained a wider meaning, and come to be applied to any sudden and mercenary change in politics.'' --Lord Mahon. Bamboo rat (Zo["o]l.), any Indian rodent of the genus Rhizomys. Beaver rat, Coast rat. (Zo["o]l.) See under Beaver and Coast. Blind rat (Zo["o]l.), the mole rat. Cotton rat (Zo["o]l.), a long-haired rat ( Sigmodon hispidus), native of the Southern United States and Mexico. It makes its nest of cotton and is often injurious to the crop. Ground rat. See Ground Pig, under Ground. Hedgehog rat. See under Hedgehog. Kangaroo rat (Zo["o]l.), the potoroo. Norway rat (Zo["o]l.), the common brown rat. See Rat. Pouched rat. (Zo["o]l.)

    1. See Pocket Gopher, under Pocket.

    2. Any African rodent of the genus Cricetomys.

      Rat Indians (Ethnol.), a tribe of Indians dwelling near Fort Ukon, Alaska. They belong to the Athabascan stock.

      Rat mole. (Zo["o]l.) See Mole rat, under Mole.

      Rat pit, an inclosed space into which rats are put to be killed by a dog for sport.

      Rat snake (Zo["o]l.), a large colubrine snake ( Ptyas mucosus) very common in India and Ceylon. It enters dwellings, and destroys rats, chickens, etc.

      Spiny rat (Zo["o]l.), any South American rodent of the genus Echinomys.

      To smell a rat. See under Smell.

      Wood rat (Zo["o]l.), any American rat of the genus Neotoma, especially Neotoma Floridana, common in the Southern United States. Its feet and belly are white.


Rat \Rat\, v. i. [imp. & p. p. Ratted; p. pr. & vb. n. Ratting.]

  1. In English politics, to desert one's party from interested motives; to forsake one's associates for one's own advantage; in the trades, to work for less wages, or on other conditions, than those established by a trades union.

    Coleridge . . . incurred the reproach of having ratted, solely by his inability to follow the friends of his early days.
    --De Quincey.

  2. To catch or kill rats.

    2. To be an informer (against an associate); to inform (on an associate); to squeal; -- used commonly in the phrase to rat on.

Douglas Harper's Etymology Dictionary

1812, "to desert one's party; 1864 as "to catch rats;" 1910 as "to peach on, inform on, behave dishonestly toward;" from rat (n.). Related: Ratted; ratting.


late Old English ræt "rat," of uncertain origin. Similar words are found in Celtic (Gaelic radan), Romanic (Italian ratto, Spanish rata, French rat) and Germanic (Old Saxon ratta; Dutch rat; German Ratte, dialectal Ratz; Swedish råtta, Danish rotte) languages, but connection is uncertain and origin unknown. In all this it is very much like cat.\n

\nPerhaps from Vulgar Latin *rattus, but Weekley thinks this is of Germanic origin, "the animal having come from the East with the race-migrations" and the word passing thence to the Romanic languages. American Heritage and Tucker connect Old English ræt to Latin rodere and thus PIE *red- "to scrape, scratch, gnaw," source of rodent (q.v.). Klein says there is no such connection and suggests a possible cognate in Greek rhine "file, rasp." Weekley connects them with a question mark and Barnhart writes, "the relationship to each other of the Germanic, Romance, and Celtic words for rat is uncertain." OED says "probable" the rat word spread from Germanic to Romanic, but takes no position on ultimate origin.\n\nRATS. Of these there are the following kinds: a black rat and a grey rat, a py-rat and a cu-rat.

["Dictionary of the Vulgar Tongue," Grose, 1788]

\nMiddle English common form was ratton, from augmented Old French form raton. Sense of "one who abandons his associates" (1620s) is from belief that rats leave a ship about to sink or a house about to fall and led to meaning "traitor, informant" (1902; verb 1910). Interjection rats is American English, 1886. To smell a rat is 1540s; "to be put on the watch by suspicion as the cat by the scent of a rat; to suspect danger" [Johnson]. _____-rat, "person who frequents _____" (in earliest reference dock-rat) is from 1864.

n. (context zoology English) A medium-sized rodent belonging to the genus ''Rattus''. vb. 1 (context usually with “on” or “out” English) To betray someone and tell their secret to an authority or an enemy; to turn someone in, bewray. 2 (context of a dog, etc. English) To kill rats.

  1. v. desert one's party or group of friends, for example, for one's personal advantage

  2. employ scabs or strike breakers in

  3. take the place of work of someone on strike [syn: scab, blackleg]

  4. give (hair) the appearance of being fuller by using a rat

  5. catch rats, especially with dogs

  6. give away information about somebody; "He told on his classmate who had cheated on the exam" [syn: denounce, tell on, betray, give away, grass, shit, shop, snitch, stag]

  7. [also: ratting, ratted]

  1. n. any of various long-tailed rodents similar to but larger than a mouse

  2. someone who works (or provides workers) during a strike [syn: scab, strikebreaker, blackleg]

  3. a person who is deemed to be despicable or contemptible; "only a rotter would do that"; "kill the rat"; "throw the bum out"; "you cowardly little pukes!"; "the British call a contemptible person a `git'" [syn: rotter, dirty dog, skunk, stinker, stinkpot, bum, puke, crumb, lowlife, scum bag, so-and-so, git]

  4. one who reveals confidential information in return for money [syn: informer, betrayer, squealer, blabber]

  5. a pad (usually made of hair) worn as part of a woman's coiffure

  6. [also: ratting, ratted]

Rat (zodiac)

The Rat () is one of the 12-year cycle of animals which appear in the Chinese zodiac related to the Chinese calendar. The Year of the Rat is associated with the Earthly Branch symbol . Year of the Rat is the leap year.

Rat (disambiguation)

A rat is a rodent of the genus Rattus. Rat may also mean similar species of rodent, especially those of the family Muridae

Rat or Rats may also refer to:

Rat (newspaper)

Rat Subterranean News, New York's second major underground newspaper, was created in March 1968, primarily by editor Jeff Shero, Alice Embree and Gary Thiher, who moved up from Austin, Texas, where they had been involved in The Rag.

Rat (short story)

"Rat" is a science fiction short story by James Patrick Kelly. It was nominated for the Hugo Award for Best Short Story 1987, and the Nebula Award for Best Short Story in 1986. Also nominated for Lucas Poll Award category for best short story and also nominated for SF Chronicle Award for the same category. In 1986 "Rat" was published in Magazine of Fantasy and Science Fiction


Rats are various medium-sized, long-tailed rodents of the superfamily Muroidea. "True rats" are members of the genus Rattus, the most important of which to humans are the black rat, Rattus rattus, and the brown rat, Rattus norvegicus. Many members of other rodent genera and families are also referred to as rats, and share many characteristics with true rats.

Rats are typically distinguished from mice by their size. Generally, when someone discovers a large muroid rodent, its common name includes the term rat, while if it is smaller, the name includes the term mouse. The muroid family is broad and complex, and the common terms rat and mouse are not taxonomically specific. Scientifically, the terms are not confined to members of the Rattus and Mus genera, for example, the pack rat and cotton mouse.

Rat (Ned's Atomic Dustbin)

Rat was the preferred nickname of the musician Gareth Pring (born 8 November 1970, Sedgley, West Midlands)

Rat is most famous for being the guitarist in the early 1990s indie punk band, Ned's Atomic Dustbin, he was a founding member of the band, and stayed in situ from 1987 to 1995. Ned's Atomic Dustbin had a string of hit singles between 1990 and 1995, among them, "Grey Cell Green" and "Kill Your Television" and "Not Sleeping Around". Shortly after the success of Godfodder, Rat said, "people ask me all the time if I consider myself successful now, or need a No. 1 album before I feel I've validated myself. As long as I'm happy, I don't care. As soon as you start worrying too much about the numbers, you're bound to get miserable."

On Neds' sound, Rat elaborates, "We wanted to do a lot of things musically, one of which was to create something that was the antithesis to dance music. I think that by having two basses, our music sounds a lot heavier than other bands that only have one, and we're totally into that. Whether that was our intent when we formed the group, I can't honestly say."

In a 1992 interview, in response to the grebo label, ("In English schoolyard lingo, "grebo" is the equivalent of "dork." In pop jargon, it refers to a long-haired, smelly person.") Rat says, ""I am a dork, but at least I don't smell. Maybe in the beginning, it was meant to be derogatory, but I don't think 'grebo' has bad connotations anymore."" He further states, "We toured Japan before, and it was brilliant because the kids went mad. The only way we could communicate with them was through our music, but they understood everything we were saying, which is how music should be. It should be so powerful that you don't need a translator, you know?"

Although Rat co-wrote and played on Ned's Atomic Dustbin's final album, Brainbloodvolume, he declined to play on their 1995 North American tour.

After the Ned's split, he formed a new band Groundswell with singer Jonn Penney (also formerly of Ned's Atomic Dustbin), and together they wrote a number of songs together. However, he left the band after only a couple of live performances. Groundswell later reunited for a performance in 2000.

Along with original bassist Matt Cheslin, Rat did not partake in the Ned's Atomic Dustbin reunion from 2000 – 2007. Both have now rejoined the band for a show in 2008 and shows in December 2009.

Rât (Mureș)

The Rât is a left tributary of the river Mureș in Transylvania, Romania. It discharges into the Mureș in Ciumbrud.

Rat (film)

Rat is a 2000 Irish- British- American comedy film directed by Steve Barron and starring Imelda Staunton and Pete Postlethwaite. The film focuses on the transformation of a working-class man into a rat and how his family copes with the startling change. The film's scenario is partly based on Franz Kafka's The Metamorphosis.

Usage examples of "rat".

RAT, or Remote Access Trojan, gives the attacker full access to your computer, just as if he were sitting at your keyboard.

Men came out from stores and counting houses, eager to have a hand in forestalling the embargo, and worked, adrip with perspiration, alongside stevedores and wharf rats and seamen and teamsters and farmers.

Halott was gone, the tiger returned and chuffed once more and I followed it down a set of stairs, down through a laboratory of some kind, and on down into dank basements below, with water adrip, slime on the walls, and rats running everywhere.

This human cargo represents a weight of about twenty tons, which is equivalent to that of thirty persons, two boars, three sows, twelve piglets, thirty fowls, ten dogs, twenty rats, a hundred balled or potted breadfruit and banana plants, and twelve tons of watergourds, seeds, yams, tubers, coconuts, adzes and weapons.

Sis and old Si and Shep Hodgden and Gimmy Biddle and Charles Fifield was there and father said this will make jest the horse you want for your store and old Si said she aint biger than a rat and father said i gess she is big enuf to carry out all your lodes unless you put down your price, and then they all laffed at Si, and then Si said she was a puller and father said what do you want Josiar one that you have to push, and then they laffed agen and when father called him Josiar i know Si had better look out for when father calls me Henry i know i am in for a liking.

Koslowski was a Park rat, and a daughter and a granddaughter of more Park rats who were all now either working on the TransAlaska Pipeline or in Prudhoe Bay, or in the Pioneer Home in Anchorage, eating Doritos and watching Jerry Springer on cable.

We saw you were an Animist by your necklace, and the rat dancing on your chest, of course.

A servant watched in befuddlement as they wandered past, the Animist carrying on a one-sided conversation with the rat in his hands.

Osana had vanished early in the troubles that now shook Arad Doman like a dog shaking a rat, and her servants had drifted quickly to others of her house, taking whatever places they could find.

At the first arpeggiated tracings of A minor, the rats begin milling, rumoring among themselves.

The tangled lace of Flow drifted undisturbed, and no aureate Shells larger than those of rats shimmered in the shadows.

I found an enormous rat, which I took for a bandicoot, in one of the bath-rooms, and, shutting him in for a while, I closed the doors of a very large room adjoining, which was quite empty, and then turned my friend in with a small black-and-tan terrier.

The Biter men were greatly expert at his game, and frisked about like rats where he could only blunder in the dark.

Tooth had called for small rats, house and country, which was a fair enough call as some sewer, cesspool and dockside rats were almost as large as the little terrier himself.

Anyway, when Dinstable and young Charity applied for the license, Chuffy smelled a rat.