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from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. Water condensed from atmospheric vapor and falling in drops.
  • n. A fall of such water; a rainstorm.
  • n. The descent of such water.
  • n. Rainy weather.
  • n. A rainy season.
  • n. A heavy or abundant fall: a rain of fluffy cottonwood seeds; a rain of insults.
  • intransitive v. To fall in drops of water from the clouds.
  • intransitive v. To fall like rain: Praise rained down on the composer.
  • intransitive v. To release rain.
  • transitive v. To send or pour down.
  • transitive v. To give abundantly; shower: rain gifts; rain curses upon their heads.
  • rain out To force the cancellation or postponement of (an outdoor event) because of rain. Used in passive constructions: The ball game was rained out.
  • idiom rain cats and dogs Informal To rain very heavily.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. Condensed water falling from a cloud.
  • n. Any matter moving or falling, usually through air, and especially if liquid or otherwise figuratively identifiable with raindrops.
  • n. An instance of particles or larger pieces of matter moving or falling through air.
  • v. To have rain fall from the sky.
  • v. To fall in large quantities.
  • v. To issue (something) in large quantities.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Reign.
  • n. Water falling in drops from the clouds; the descent of water from the clouds in drops.
  • intransitive v. To fall in drops from the clouds, as water; -- used mostly with it for a nominative.
  • intransitive v. To fall or drop like water from the clouds.
  • transitive v. To pour or shower down from above, like rain from the clouds.
  • transitive v. To bestow in a profuse or abundant manner.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. The descent of water in drops through the atmosphere, or the water thus falling.
  • n. Figuratively— A fall of any substance through the atmosphere in the manner of rain, as of blossoms or of the pyrotechnic stars from rockets and other fireworks.
  • n. A shower, downpour, or abundant outpouring of anything.
  • n. Synonyms Rain, Haze, Fog, Mist, Cloud. A cloud resting upon the earth is called mist or fog. In mist the globules are very fine, but are separately distinguishable, and have a visible motion. In fog the particles are separately indistinguishable, and there is no perceptible motion. A dry fog is composed largely of dust-particles on which the condensed vapor is too slight to occasion any sense of moisture. Haze differs from fog and cloud in the greater microscopic minuteness of its particles. It is visible only as a want of transparency of the atmosphere, and in general exhibits neither form, boundary, nor locus. Thus, among haze, fog, mist, and rain, the size of the constituent particles or globules is a discriminating characteristic, though frequently cloud merges into fog or mist, and mist into rain, by insensible gradations.
  • To fall in drops through the air, as water: generally used impersonally.
  • To fall or drop like rain; as, tears rained from their eyes.
  • To pour or shower down, like rain from the clouds; pour or send down abundantly.
  • n. A ridge.
  • n. A furrow.
  • n. An obsolete spelling of rein.
  • n.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • n. water falling in drops from vapor condensed in the atmosphere
  • n. anything happening rapidly or in quick successive
  • n. drops of fresh water that fall as precipitation from clouds
  • v. precipitate as rain


Middle English, from Old English regn, rēn.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
Middle English reyn, rein, from Old English reġn, from Proto-Germanic *regnaz (compare West Frisian rein, Dutch regen, German Regen, Danish regn), from pre-Germanic *Hréǵ-no-, from Proto-Indo-European *Hreǵ 'to flow' (cf. Latin rigō ("wet, soak"), Lithuanian rõki 'drizzling rain', Albanian rrjedh 'to flow, drip'). (Wiktionary)


  • The fact that we usually are talking about rain in a particular place has to do with the nature of rain and the way humans are concerned with it and conceptualize the phenomena, rather than the syntax of ˜rain.™


  • Their authority rests above all upon their supposed power of making rain, for “rain is the one thing which matters to the people in those districts, as if it does not come down at the right time it means untold hardships for the community.

    Chapter 6. Magicians as Kings

  • Rule 55 the umpire is prohibited from suspending play in a match game on account of rain, unless "_rain falls so heavily that the spectators are compelled by the severity of the storm_, to seek shelter."

    Spalding's Baseball Guide and Official League Book for 1889

  • I had to wait 5 months AND come north a thousand of miles or so to find out that there was a tropical depression and that was the reason for all of the rain in October. (there was so much rain that we were sort of stuck at home - I refused to drive down the mountain unless absolutely necessary because I got stuck once, and I was not about to get stuck in the mud again. * think dirt road/ruts + 30+ days of heavy rain*)

    La Gringa's Blogicito

  • Rains of Fishes: Do fishes fall in rain from the sky?

    Boing Boing

  • Plus the rain is a good excuse to stay in and relax.

    Archive 2009-08-01

  • Inviting people in out of the rain is a totally different thing from people just trying to get out of the rain.

    These ‘I regret my 2008 vote’ pieces are going to be excruciating… | RedState

  • Right now the rain is as heavy as I've ever seen it.

    This is my brain on stir-fry

  • And sometimes the fact that we can dance after the rain is the most remarkable part of all.

    Rain. Dance. | Her Bad Mother

  • Well, you know, we should just warn folks there that if we lose you it's because of what we call rain faith.

    CNN Transcript Jul 14, 2008


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  • Fantastic is just the right word.

    August 23, 2008

  • I also love rain. Which is a good thing because it has pretty much rained all month in Adelaide.

    August 23, 2008

  • It just so happens there was some fantastic rain happening in Sydney on Friday…

    August 23, 2008

  • Something kewpid and frindley love.

    August 23, 2008