World English Dictionary
civil engineering broken stones loosely deposited in water or on a soft bottom to provide a foundation and protect a riverbed or river banks from scour: used for revetments, embankments, breakwaters, etc
[C19: reduplication of rap1]

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

"loose stone thrown down in water or soft ground as foundation," 1822, Amer.Eng., from earlier nautical meaning "stretch of rippling water" (often caused by underwater elevations), 1669, probably of imitative origin.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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