[ ruhb-er ]
See synonyms for: rubberrubberedrubberingrubbers on

  1. Also called India rubber, natural rubber, gum, gum elastic, caoutchouc . a highly elastic solid substance, light cream or dark amber in color, polymerized by the drying and coagulation of the latex or milky juice of rubber trees and plants, especially Hevea and Ficus species.

  2. a material made by chemically treating and toughening this substance, valued for its elasticity, nonconduction of electricity, shock absorption, and resistance to moisture, used in the manufacture of erasers, electrical insulation, elastic bands, crepe soles, toys, water hoses, tires, and many other products.

  1. any of various similar substances and materials made synthetically.: Compare synthetic rubber.

  2. an eraser of this material, for erasing pencil marks, ink marks, etc.

  3. Informal. a rubber tire or a set of rubber tires.

  4. a low overshoe of this material.

  5. an instrument or tool used for rubbing, polishing, scraping, etc.

  6. a person who rubs something, as to smooth or polish it.

  7. British. a dishcloth.

  8. a person who gives massages; masseur or masseuse.

  9. Horse Racing. swipe (def. 7).

  10. Baseball. an oblong piece of white rubber or other material embedded in the mound at the point from which the pitcher delivers the ball.

  11. a coarse file.

  12. Slang. a condom.

verb (used without object)
  1. Informal. to rubberneck.

  1. made of, containing, or coated with rubber: a rubber bath mat.

  2. pertaining to or producing rubber: a rubber plantation.

Origin of rubber

First recorded in 1530–40; rub + -er1

Other words from rubber

  • rub·ber·less, adjective
  • rub·ber·like, adjective

Words Nearby rubber

Other definitions for rubber (2 of 2)

[ ruhb-er ]

noun(in certain card games, as bridge and whist)
  1. a series or round played until one sidereaches a specific score or wins a specific number of hands.

  2. a series consisting of an odd number of games won by the side winning the majority, usually two out of three.

  1. the deciding game in such a series.

  1. Sports. noting a deciding contest between two opponents who have previously won the same number of contests from each other:a rubber match.

Origin of rubber

First recorded in 1585–95; origin uncertain Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023

How to use rubber in a sentence

British Dictionary definitions for rubber (1 of 2)


/ (ˈrʌbə) /

  1. Also called: India rubber, gum elastic, caoutchouc a cream to dark brown elastic material obtained by coagulating and drying the latex from certain plants, esp the tree Hevea brasiliensis

  2. any of a large variety of elastomers produced by improving the properties of natural rubber or by synthetic means

  1. mainly British a piece of rubber or felt used for erasing something written, typed, etc; eraser

  2. a coarse file

  3. a cloth, pad, etc, used for polishing or buffing

  4. a person who rubs something in order to smooth, polish, or massage

  5. (often plural) mainly US and Canadian a rubberized waterproof article, such as a mackintosh or overshoe

  6. slang a male contraceptive; condom

  7. (modifier) made of or producing rubber: a rubber ball; a rubber factory

Origin of rubber

C17: from rub + -er 1; the tree was so named because its product was used for rubbing out writing

British Dictionary definitions for rubber (2 of 2)


/ (ˈrʌbə) /

  1. bridge whist

    • a match of three games

    • the deal that wins such a match

  2. a series of matches or games in any of various sports

Origin of rubber

C16: origin unknown

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

Scientific definitions for rubber


[ rŭbər ]

  1. An elastic material prepared from the milky sap of certain tropical plants, especially the tree Hevea brasiliensis. Rubber is a polymer that is used, after processing, in a great variety of products, including electric insulation and tires. In its pure form, it is white and consists of repeating units of C5H8.

  2. Any of various synthetic materials having properties that are similar to those of this substance.

The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.