rubber

Rubber is the material that's used to make things like bouncy balls, rain boots, and car tires. Most rubber comes partly from rubber trees.

To make rubber, manufacturers harvest latex from rubber trees by tapping them — the process is similar to collecting sap from maple trees. It's then refined and processed, often with other materials, to make things ranging from conveyer belts in factories to balloons and the gloves doctors wear. When rubber first arrived in Europe in the 1700s, it was made into erasers, and the idea of rubbing out mistakes led to the word rubber being coined.

Primary Meanings of rubber

1.
nv
an elastic material obtained from the latex sap of trees (especially trees of the genera Hevea and Ficus) that can be vulcanized and finished into a variety of products
coat or impregnate with rubber
2.
adj
returned for lack of funds
Full Definitions of rubber
1

n an elastic material obtained from the latex sap of trees (especially trees of the genera Hevea and Ficus) that can be vulcanized and finished into a variety of products

Synonyms:
India rubber, caoutchouc, gum elastic, natural rubber
Types:
show 5 types...
hide 5 types...
foam rubber
spongy rubber; made by introducing air bubbles before vulcanization and used for cushioning or upholstery
crepe rubber
crude natural rubber; used mainly for shoe soles
cold rubber
a rubber made at low temperatures (5 degrees Centigrade) which is tougher than conventional rubber and is often used in car tires
ebonite, hard rubber, vulcanite
a hard nonresilient rubber formed by vulcanizing natural rubber
Para rubber
a type of natural rubber obtained from tropical South American trees
Type of:
latex
a milky exudate from certain plants that coagulates on exposure to air

n any of various synthetic elastic materials whose properties resemble natural rubber

Synonyms:
synthetic rubber
Types:
show 4 types...
hide 4 types...
silicone rubber
made from silicone elastomers; retains flexibility resilience and tensile strength over a wide temperature range
neoprene
a synthetic rubber that is resistant to oils and aging; used in waterproof products
buna, buna rubber
made by polymerizing butadiene
butyl rubber
synthetic rubber made by polymerizing isobutylene
Type of:
synthetic, synthetic substance
a compound made artificially by chemical reactions

n an eraser made of rubber (or of a synthetic material with properties similar to rubber); commonly mounted at one end of a pencil

Synonyms:
pencil eraser, rubber eraser
Type of:
eraser
an implement used to erase something

n a waterproof overshoe that protects shoes from water or snow

Synonyms:
arctic, galosh, golosh, gumshoe
Type of:
overshoe
footwear that protects your shoes from water or snow or cold

n contraceptive device consisting of a sheath of thin rubber or latex that is worn over the penis during intercourse

Type of:
birth control device, contraceptive, contraceptive device, preventative, preventive, prophylactic device
an agent or device intended to prevent conception

v coat or impregnate with rubber

Synonyms:
rubberise, rubberize
Type of:
coat, surface
put a coat on; cover the surface of; furnish with a surface
2

adj returned for lack of funds

“a rubber check”
Synonyms:
no-good
bad
having undesirable or negative qualities

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.