See more synonyms for rile on
verb (used with object), riled, ril·ing. Chiefly Northern and North Midland U.S.
  1. to irritate or vex.
  2. to roil (water or the like).

Origin of rile

First recorded in 1815–25; variant of roil

Synonyms for rile

See more synonyms for on Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for riles

Historical Examples of riles

  • Thet is, he's cruel when I riles him, as I got a habit o' doin'.

    Mary Louise in the Country

    L. Frank Baum (AKA Edith Van Dyne)

  • The idea of his threatenin' to shoot me with my own gun; that's what riles me most.

    Canoe Boys and Campfires

    William Murray Graydon

  • I jest can't put my finger on the spot that riles me, but that man riles me.

    Drusilla with a Million

    Elizabeth Cooper

  • About that, too, there is something that riles the New England blood in my veins.

  • In the home of Riles I am afraid you have seen but little self-control in any form.

    The Bail Jumper

    Robert J. C. Stead

British Dictionary definitions for riles


verb (tr)
  1. to annoy or anger; irritate
  2. US and Canadian to stir up or agitate (water, etc); roil or make turbid

Word Origin for rile

C19: variant of roil
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 riles



1825, American English spelling alteration to reflect a dialectal pronunciation of roil (q.v.); cf. heist from hoist and in the same era spile for spoil (v.). Bartlett writes that in both England and America roil "is now commonly pronounced and written rile" ["Dictionary of Americanisms," 1848]. Related: Riled; riling.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper