• synonyms


verb (used with object), rid or rid·ded, rid·ding.
  1. to clear, disencumber, or free of something objectionable (usually followed by of): I want to rid the house of mice. In my opinion, you'd be wise to rid yourself of the smoking habit.
  2. to relieve or disembarrass (usually followed by of): to rid the mind of doubt.
  3. Archaic. to deliver or rescue: to rid them out of bondage; to rid him from his enemies.
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  1. be rid of, to be free of or no longer encumbered by: to be rid of obligations.
  2. get rid of, to eliminate or discard: It's time we got rid of this trash.
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Origin of rid

1150–1200; Middle English ridden (v.), Old English (ge)ryddan to clear (land); cognate with Old Norse rythja to clear, empty
Related formsrid·der, noun


verb Archaic.
  1. a simple past tense and past participle of ride.
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Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words for rids

unload, clear, relieve, purge, eliminate, liberate, eradicate, shed, dump, eject, expel, disembarrass, scrap, exterminate, deliver, junk, remove, abolish, fire, disabuse

Examples from the Web for rids

Historical Examples of rids

  • The nobleman cuts it off, and so rids the village of its fatal visitor.

    Russian Fairy Tales

    W. R. S. Ralston

  • For so this doth, and rids way (as we call it) as fast as a man can run.

  • And every illusion one rids oneself of is so much to the good.

  • This rids us of one hypothesis: the sense of direction is not exercised by the antennae.

    The Mason-bees

    J. Henri Fabre

  • For so this doth, and rids away as we call it, as fast as a man can run.

British Dictionary definitions for rids


verb rids, ridding, rid or ridded (tr)
  1. (foll by of) to relieve or deliver from something disagreeable or undesirable; make free (of)to rid a house of mice
  2. get rid of to relieve or free oneself of (something or someone unpleasant or undesirable)
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Derived Formsridder, noun

Word Origin for rid

C13 (meaning: to clear land): from Old Norse rythja; related to Old High German riutan to clear land
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 rids



c.1200, "clear (a space); set free, save," from a Scandinavian source akin to Old Norse ryðja (past tense ruddi, past participle ruddr) "to clear (land) of obstructions," from Proto-Germanic *reudijanan (cf. Old High German riuten, German reuten "to clear land," Old Frisian rothia "to clear," Old English -royd "clearing," common in northern place names), from PIE root *reudh- "to clear land." The general sense of "to make (something) free (of something else)" emerged by 1560s. Senses merged somewhat with Northern English, Scottish, and U.S. dialectal redd. To get rid of (something or someone) is from 1660s. Related: Ridden; ridding.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

Idioms and Phrases with rids


see get rid of.

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The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.