A rib is a curved bone in a person's chest. Your ribs protect your internal organs. A rib is also the curved bone in a pig’s chest, and some people eat that with barbeque sauce.

Ribs are strong and flexible, and they form a kind of protective cage around our soft inside parts. Animals have ribs, too — fish even have two sets of ribs. If you're a meat eater, you probably know that pigs and cows have ribs that are a popular menu item at barbecue restaurants. Things that resemble anatomical ribs, like raised rows in a knitted garment — are also called ribs. And to rib someone is to tease them.

Primary Meanings of rib

any of the 12 pairs of curved arches of bone extending from the spine to or toward the sternum in humans (and similar bones in most vertebrates)
form vertical ribs by knitting
a teasing remark
subject to laughter or ridicule
Full Definitions of rib

n any of the 12 pairs of curved arches of bone extending from the spine to or toward the sternum in humans (and similar bones in most vertebrates)

true rib
one of the first seven ribs in a human being which attach to the sternum
Type of:
bone, os
rigid connective tissue that makes up the skeleton of vertebrates

n a riblike supporting or strengthening part of an animal or plant

calamus, quill, shaft
the hollow spine of a feather
nervure, vein
one of the horny ribs that stiffen and support the wing of an insect
Type of:
anatomical structure, bodily structure, body structure, complex body part, structure
a particular complex anatomical part of a living thing

n support resembling the rib of an animal

screw thread, thread
the raised helical rib going around a screw
Type of:
any device that bears the weight of another thing

n a projecting molding on the underside of a vault or ceiling; may be ornamental or structural

Type of:
molding, moulding
a decorative strip used for ornamentation or finishing

n cut of meat including one or more ribs

a cut of pork ribs with much of the meat trimmed off
Type of:
cut, cut of meat
a piece of meat that has been cut from an animal carcass

v form vertical ribs by knitting

“A ribbed sweater”
Type of:
make (textiles) by knitting

n a teasing remark

Type of:
comment, input, remark
a statement that expresses a personal opinion or belief or adds information

v subject to laughter or ridicule

blackguard, guy, jest at, laugh at, make fun, poke fun, ridicule, roast
show 5 types...
hide 5 types...
mock or make fun of playfully
lampoon, satirise, satirize
ridicule with satire
debunk, expose
expose while ridiculing; especially of pretentious or false claims and ideas
cause to appear foolish
uncloak, unmask
reveal the true nature of
Type of:
bemock, mock
treat with contempt

Sign up, it's free!

Whether you're a student, an educator, or a lifelong learner, Vocabulary.com can put you on the path to systematic vocabulary improvement.