- a person who abandons or betrays his or her party or associates, especially in a time of trouble.
- an informer.
- a scab laborer.
verb (used without object), rat·ted, rat·ting.
- to desert one's party or associates, especially in a time of trouble.
- to turn informer; squeal: He ratted on the gang, and the police arrested them.
- to work as a scab.
verb (used with object), rat·ted, rat·ting.
Origin of rat
Related formsrat·like, adjective
Examples from the Web for rat
One rat had once fallen on his head, he said, during a rat raid of a local home.
Since rat root comes from a plant that grows on the edge of the lake there are concerns that the plant is carrying toxins.
A cabin filled with the Rat Pack and the ladies who loved them.
Not that the Rat Pack party days were completely behind him.
A flea, Xenopsylla cheopis, from an infected little mammal—usually a rat—can hop from the dying rat onto a human and bite it.It’s Not Time to Worry About China’s Plague Just Yet|Kent Sepkowitz|July 23, 2014|DAILY BEAST
Me tink pilot smell a rat, for ebery time he hear a noise on deck he come out of his cabin and look round.By Sheer Pluck|G. A. Henty
Giddings ran, the Rat River call echoing again down the hall behind him.Held for Orders|Frank H. Spearman
Rat me, if I had not misgivings that it might prove to be so.Micah Clarke|Arthur Conan Doyle
A rat will push down his tail into the tall-shaped bottle of preserves, and lick it after he has pulled it out.
I sat in the boat stripped and shivering, for shipwreck seemed certain, and I did not wish to be drowned like a rat.An Australian in China|George Ernest Morrison
British Dictionary definitions for rat
verb rats, ratting or ratted
- to divulge secret information (about); betray the trust (of)
- to default (on); abandonhe ratted on the project at the last minute
Derived Formsratlike, adjective
Word Origin for rat
Medicine definitions for rat
Idioms and Phrases with rat
In addition to the idioms beginning with rat
- rat on
- rat race
- like a drowned rat
- smell a rat