follow Dictionary.com

Do you know ghouls from goblins and ghosts?

raft1

[raft, rahft] /ræft, rɑft/
noun
1.
a more or less rigid floating platform made of buoyant material or materials:
an inflatable rubber raft.
2.
a collection of logs, planks, casks, etc., fastened together for floating on water.
3.
4.
a slab of reinforced concrete providing a footing on yielding soil, usually for a whole building, so that the weight of the soil that would be displaced by the settlement of the building exceeds the weight of the building itself; mat.
verb (used with object)
5.
to transport on a raft.
6.
to form (logs or the like) into a raft.
7.
to travel or cross by raft.
8.
(of an ice floe) to transport (embedded organic or rock debris) from the shore out to sea.
verb (used without object)
9.
to use a raft; go or travel on a raft.
10.
(of an ice floe) to overlap another ice floe.
Origin
1250-1300
1250-1300; Middle English rafte, perhaps < Old Norse raptr rafter1

raft2

[raft, rahft] /ræft, rɑft/
noun, Informal.
1.
a great quantity; a lot:
a raft of trouble.
Origin
1825-35; variant of raff large number (Middle English: abundance)
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
Cite This Source
Examples from the web for raft
  • He then boarded the last slide raft, and before long climbed onto a rescue boat.
  • Try a no-skills-required raft race or a kayak clinic.
  • The conference also dealt with challenges facing the raft of new indigenous universities across the region.
  • The area is quiet and remote and offers canoe and raft rentals for visitors.
  • Swimming to an emergency life raft that had opened with his jump, he waited to be rescued.
  • Posterity tends to give novelists a longer ride on one or two big books than on a raft of smaller ones.
  • Natives pay no taxes and receive a raft of goodies from the government, from marriage bonuses to free health care to easy credit.
  • And a raft of genetic diseases have been turning up in a variety of dog breeds.
  • However, if you want to prevent getting a raft of payday loans to pay for treatment prevention is easy.
  • The resulting two-layer raft is cohesive, buoyant and water-repellent.
British Dictionary definitions for raft

raft1

/rɑːft/
noun
1.
a buoyant platform of logs, planks, etc, used as a vessel or moored platform
2.
a thick slab of reinforced concrete laid over soft ground to provide a foundation for a building
verb
3.
to convey on or travel by raft, or make a raft from
Derived Forms
rafting, noun
Word Origin
C15: from Old Norse raptrrafter

raft2

/rɑːft/
noun
1.
(informal) a large collection or amount: a raft of old notebooks discovered in a cupboard
Word Origin
C19: from raff
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
Cite This Source
Word Origin and History for raft
n.

"floating platform," late 15c., originally "rafter" (c.1300), from a Scandinavian source, cf. Old Norse raptr "log" (Old Norse -pt- pronounced as -ft-), related to Middle Low German rafter, rachter "rafter" (see rafter).

"large collection," 1830, variant of raff "heap, large amount," from Middle English raf (cf. raffish, riffraff); form and sense associated with raft (n.1).

v.

1680s, from raft (n.1). Related: Rafted; rafting.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
Cite This Source
Slang definitions & phrases for raft

raft

noun

A large number; oodles, slew: I have rafts of reasons for not doing that

[1833+; fr earlier uses of raft to mean a dense flight of waterfowl, a mass of logs in a river, etc]


The Dictionary of American Slang, Fourth Edition by Barbara Ann Kipfer, PhD. and Robert L. Chapman, Ph.D.
Copyright (C) 2007 by HarperCollins Publishers.
Cite This Source
Encyclopedia Article for raft

simplest type of watercraft, made up of logs or planks fastened together to form a floating platform. The earliest were sometimes made of bundles of reeds. Most rafts have been designed simply to float with the current, but they can be equipped with oars or sails or both and can be navigated in the ocean over long distances, as was dramatically demonstrated by Norwegian scientist Thor Heyerdahl in 1947; to test his theory that the Pacific islands might have been settled by people from South America, he sailed a large balsa raft, the Kon-Tiki, from Peru to islands near Tahiti in a voyage of three and a half months. The double-hulled catamarans of India are also seaworthy rafts.

Learn more about raft with a free trial on Britannica.com
Encyclopedia Britannica, 2008. Encyclopedia Britannica Online.
Cite This Source

Word of the Day

Difficulty index for raft

Most English speakers likely know this word

Word Value for raft

7
7
Scrabble Words With Friends

Quotes with raft

Nearby words for raft