violent in action or spirit; raging; furious: a rampant leopard.
growing luxuriantly, as weeds.
in full sway; prevailing or unchecked: a rampant rumor.
(of an animal) standing on the hind legs; ramping.
Heraldry. (of a beast used as a charge) represented in profile facing the dexter side, with the body upraised and resting on the left hind leg, the tail and other legs elevated, the right foreleg highest, and the head in profile unless otherwise specified: a lion rampant.
Architecture. (of an arch or vault) springing at one side from one level of support and resting at the other on a higher level.

Origin of rampant

1350–1400; Middle English < Old French, present participle of ramper to ramp1
Related formsramp·ant·ly, adverb

Synonyms for rampant

Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for rampant

Contemporary Examples of rampant

Historical Examples of rampant

  • Newly facing the evil of the world, she was a rampant reformer at once.


    Mary Roberts Rinehart

  • When the brick-house era sets in, the middleman will be rampant.

  • And yet the seeds of it must be in your heart, or it could not all at once shew itself so rampant.

    Clarissa, Volume 2 (of 9)

    Samuel Richardson

  • Heterodoxy in details of faith is rampant, and is no obstacle to Christian fellowship.

    Mountain Meditations

    L. Lind-af-Hageby

  • Credit is woefully inflated; speculation and waste are rampant.

    Herbert Hoover

    Vernon Kellogg

British Dictionary definitions for rampant



unrestrained or violent in behaviour, desire, opinions, etc
growing or developing unchecked
(postpositive) heraldry (of a beast) standing on the hind legs, the right foreleg raised above the left
(of an arch) having one abutment higher than the other
Derived Formsrampancy, nounrampantly, adverb

Word Origin for rampant

C14: from Old French ramper to crawl, rear; see ramp
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Word Origin and History for rampant

late 14c., "standing on the hind legs" (as a heraldic lion often does), thus, also, "fierce, ravenous" (late 14c.), from Old French rampant, present participle of ramper "to climb, scale, mount" (see rampage (v.)). Sense of "growing without check" (in running rampant), first recorded 1610s, probably is via the notion of "fierce disposition" or else preserves the older French sense.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper