a machine for cutting standing grain; reaping machine.
a person who reaps.

Origin of reaper

before 1000; Middle English reper, Old English ripere. See reap, -er1 Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Related Words for reaper

binder, picker

Examples from the Web for reaper

Contemporary Examples of reaper

Historical Examples of reaper

  • Now he was a ploughman (spring), now a fisherman (summer), now a reaper (autumn).

    The Book of Hallowe'en

    Ruth Edna Kelley

  • The harvest-time reminded the Bretons of the garnering by that reaper, Death.

    The Book of Hallowe'en

    Ruth Edna Kelley

  • This is cut with the reaper and binder just after the wheat plant has flowered.

    Wheat Growing in Australia

    Australia Department of External Affairs

  • A reaper is to have in time of corn-harvest 2d., the first week in August, and 3d.

  • He was fading fast, waning with the waning summer, and conscious that the Reaper was at hand.

    Mugby Junction

    Charles Dickens

British Dictionary definitions for reaper



a person who reaps or a machine for reaping
the grim reaper death
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 reaper

Old English ripere, agent noun from reap (v.). As the name of a personification of death, from 1839.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper