[ rash-uhn, rey-shuhn ]
/ ˈræʃ ən, ˈreɪ ʃən /


a fixed allowance of provisions or food, especially for soldiers or sailors or for civilians during a shortage: a daily ration of meat and bread.
an allotted amount: They finally saved up enough gas rations for the trip.
  1. provisions: Enough rations were brought along to feed all the marchers.
  2. Chiefly South Atlantic States. food or meals: The old hotel still has the best rations in town.

verb (used with object)

Origin of ration

1540–50; < French < Latin ratiōn- (stem of ratiō); see reason


1, 3 See food.
4 mete, dole, allot.


un·ra·tioned, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2020

Examples from the Web for ration

British Dictionary definitions for ration

/ (ˈræʃən) /


  1. a fixed allowance of food, provisions, etc, esp a statutory one for civilians in time of scarcity or soldiers in time of wara tea ration
  2. (as modifier)a ration book
a sufficient or adequate amountyou've had your ration of television for today

verb (tr)

(often foll by out) to distribute (provisions), esp to an army
to restrict the distribution or consumption of (a commodity) by (people)the government has rationed sugar; sugar is short, so I'll have to ration you
See also rations

Word Origin for ration

C18: via French from Latin ratiō calculation; see reason
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