1 [rahy-fuhl]
a shoulder firearm with spiral grooves cut in the inner surface of the gun barrel to give the bullet a rotatory motion and thus a more precise trajectory.
one of the grooves.
a cannon with such grooves.
(often initial capital letter) rifles, any of certain military units or bodies equipped with rifles.
verb (used with object), rifled, rifling.
to cut spiral grooves within (a gun barrel, pipe, etc.).
to propel (a ball) at high speed, as by throwing or hitting with a bat.

1745–55; < Low German rīfeln to groove, derivative of rīve, riefe groove, flute, furrow; akin to Old English rifelede wrinkled

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2 [rahy-fuhl]
verb (used with object), rifled, rifling.
to ransack and rob (a place, receptacle, etc.).
to search and rob (a person).
to plunder or strip bare.
to steal or take away.

1325–75; Middle English rifel < Old French rifler to scratch, strip, plunder

rifler, noun

1. See rob.
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Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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World English Dictionary
rifle1 (ˈraɪfəl)
1.  a.  a firearm having a long barrel with a spirally grooved interior, which imparts to the bullet spinning motion and thus greater accuracy over a longer range
 b.  (as modifier): rifle fire
2.  (formerly) a large cannon with a rifled bore
3.  one of the grooves in a rifled bore
4.  (plural)
 a.  a unit of soldiers equipped with rifles
 b.  (capital when part of a name): the Rifle Brigade
5.  to cut or mould spiral grooves inside the barrel of (a gun)
6.  to throw or hit (a ball) with great speed
[C18: from Old French rifler to scratch; related to Low German rifeln from riefe groove, furrow]

rifle2 (ˈraɪfəl)
1.  to search (a house, safe, etc) and steal from it; ransack
2.  to steal and carry off: to rifle goods from a shop
[C14: from Old French rifler to plunder, scratch, of Germanic origin]

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
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Word Origin & History

1775, "portable firearm having a spirally grooved bore," used earlier of the grooves themselves (1751), noun use of rifled (pistol), 1689, from verb meaning "to cut spiral grooves in" (a gun barrel), 1635, probably from Fr. rifler, from O.Fr. rifler "to scratch or groove" (see rifle (v.)).

"to plunder," 1326 (implied in rifling), from O.Fr. rifler "strip, plunder," lit. "to graze, scratch," probably from a Gmc. source (cf. O.E. geriflian "to wrinkle," O.H.G. riffilon "to tear by rubbing," O.N. rifa "to tear, break").
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Example sentences
They talked above the crack of distant rifle and machine-gun fire.
My father was known as crack rifle shot and as an excellent roper.
Rifle ranges and certain hole-in-the-wall lunch counters are good places to
  pick up this sort of knowledge.
He propped me up near the car and gave me this big, heavy rifle that is
  significantly longer than my arm.
Image for rifle
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