Idioms

    rock the boat, Informal. to disrupt the smooth functioning or routine of something: Don't rock the boat by demanding special treatment from management.

Origin of rock

2
before 1100; Middle English rocken, Old English roccian; cognate with Middle Dutch rocken; akin to German rücken; Old Norse rykkja to jerk

Related forms

rock·a·ble, adjectiverock·ing·ly, adverbun·rocked, adjective

Synonym study

1. See swing1.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

British Dictionary definitions for rock the boat (1 of 3)

rock

1
/ (rɒk) /

noun

Word Origin for rock

C14: from Old French roche, of unknown origin

British Dictionary definitions for rock the boat (2 of 3)

rock

2
/ (rɒk) /

verb

noun

See also rock up

Word Origin for rock

Old English roccian; related to Middle Dutch, Old High German rocken, German rücken

British Dictionary definitions for rock the boat (3 of 3)

Rock

/ (rɒk) /

noun the Rock

an informal name for Gibraltar
a Canadian informal name for Newfoundland
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

Medicine definitions for rock the boat

Rock

[ rŏk ]
John 1890-1984

American gynecologist and obstetrician who helped develop the first effective oral contraceptive in 1954.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.

Science definitions for rock the boat

rock

[ rŏk ]

A relatively hard, naturally occurring mineral material. Rock can consist of a single mineral or of several minerals that are either tightly compacted or held together by a cementlike mineral matrix. The three main types of rock are igneous, sedimentary, and metamorphic.
A piece of such material; a stone.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

Idioms and Phrases with rock the boat (1 of 2)

rock the boat


Disturb a stable situation, as in An easygoing manager, he won't rock the boat unless it's absolutely necessary. This idiom alludes to capsizing a small vessel, such as a canoe, by moving about in it too violently. [Colloquial; early 1900s]

Idioms and Phrases with rock the boat (2 of 2)

rock


In addition to the idioms beginning with rock

  • rock bottom
  • rocks in one's head, have
  • rock the boat

also see:

  • between a rock and a hard place
  • on the rocks
  • steady as a rock
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.