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riffle

[rif-uh l]
verb (used with or without object), rif·fled, rif·fling.
  1. to turn hastily; flutter and shift: to riffle a stack of letters; to riffle through a book.
  2. Cards. to shuffle by dividing the deck in two, raising the corners slightly, and allowing them to fall alternately together.
  3. to cause or become a riffle.
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noun
  1. a rapid, as in a stream.
  2. a ripple, as upon the surface of water.
  3. Mining. the lining of transverse bars or slats on the bed of a sluice, arranged so as to catch heavy minerals, as gold or platinum.
  4. a hopper for distributing bulk material.
  5. the act or method of riffling cards.
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Origin of riffle

1630–40; blend of ripple1 and ruffle1
Related formsun·rif·fled, adjective
Can be confusedriffle rifle
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words

disorderdisturbconfuseshiftdisarraydisorganizediscomposeintermixchangejumbledislocatedisruptscrambledisarrangefeedleafscanreadnibbleperuse

Examples from the Web for riffling

Contemporary Examples

Historical Examples

  • He had pulled a deck of cards from his hip pocket, and now was riffling them with pointed interest.

    Bred of the Desert

    Marcus Horton

  • It consists of riffling between the selected cards the proper number of indifferent ones.

    Sharps and Flats

    John Nevil Maskelyne

  • You could save a lot of time by taking carbon copies, suggested The Phantom, riffling the sheets lying beside the machine.

    The Gray Phantom

    Herman Landon


British Dictionary definitions for riffling

riffle

verb
  1. (when intr , often foll by through) to flick rapidly through (the pages of a book, magazine, etc), esp in a desultory manner
  2. to shuffle (playing cards) by halving the pack and flicking the adjacent corners together
  3. to make or become a riffle
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noun
  1. US and Canadian
    1. a rapid in a stream
    2. a rocky shoal causing a rapid
    3. a ripple on water
  2. mining a contrivance on the bottom of a sluice, containing transverse grooves for trapping particles of gold
  3. the act or an instance of riffling
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Word Origin

C18: probably from ruffle 1, influenced by ripple 1
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 riffling

riffle

v.

1754, "to make choppy water," American English, perhaps a variant of ruffle "make rough." The word meaning "shuffle" (cards) is first recorded 1894, probably echoic; hence that of "skim, leaf through quickly" (of papers, etc.) is from 1922. Related: Riffled; riffling.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper