runner

[ruhn-er]
noun
1.
a person, animal, or thing that runs, especially as a racer.
2.
a messenger.
3.
a messenger of a bank or brokerage house.
4.
Baseball. base runner.
5.
Football. the ball-carrier.
6.
a person whose business it is to solicit patronage or trade.
7.
a person acting as collector, agent, or the like, for a bank, broker, etc.
8.
something in or on which something else runs or moves.
9.
either of the long, bladelike strips of metal or wood on which a sled or sleigh slides.
10.
the blade of an ice skate.
11.
the rotating system of blades driven by the fluid passing through a reaction turbine.
12.
the rotating member of a pair of millstones. Compare bed stone.
13.
a roller on which something moves along.
14.
Furniture.
a.
a sliding piece, as a loper.
b.
rocker ( def 1 ).
15.
an operator or manager, as of a machine.
16.
a long, narrow rug, suitable for a hall or passageway.
17.
a long, narrow strip of line, embroidery, lace, or the like, placed across a table.
18.
Botany.
a.
a slender stolon that runs along the surface of the ground and sends out roots and leaves at the nodes, as in the strawberry.
b.
a plant that spreads by such stems.
19.
Metallurgy. any of the channels through which molten metal flows.
20.
a smuggler.
21.
a vessel engaged in smuggling.
22.
a person who takes, transmits, and often pays off bets for a bookmaker or a numbers pool.
23.
Ichthyology. a jurel, Caranx crysos, inhabiting waters from Cape Cod to Brazil.
24.
Building Trades. a horizontal longitudinal timber resting upon the uprights of a staging and supporting the footing pieces.
25.
Theater. a piece of carpet or matting placed in the wings for deadening offstage sounds.
26.
a tackle or part of a tackle consisting of a line rove through a single block and fixed at one end.

Origin:
1250–1300; Middle English; see run, -er1

Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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Collins
World English Dictionary
runner (ˈrʌnə)
 
n
1.  a person who runs, esp an athlete
2.  a messenger for a bank or brokerage firm
3.  an employee of an art or antique dealer who visits auctions to bid on desired lots
4.  a person engaged in the solicitation of business
5.  a person on the run; fugitive
6.  a.  a person or vessel engaged in smuggling; smuggler
 b.  (in combination): a rum-runner
7.  a person who operates, manages, or controls something
8.  a.  either of the strips of metal or wood on which a sledge runs
 b.  the blade of an ice skate
9.  a roller or guide for a sliding component
10.  a channel through which molten material enters a casting or moulding
11.  the rotating element of a water turbine
12.  another name for running belay
13.  any of various carangid fishes of temperate and tropical seas, such as Caranx crysos (blue runner) of American Atlantic waters
14.  botany
 a.  a slender stem with very long internodes, as of the strawberry, that arches down to the ground and propagates by producing roots and shoots at the nodes or tip
 b.  a plant that propagates in this way
15.  a strip of lace, linen, etc, placed across a table, dressing table, etc for protection and decoration
16.  a narrow rug or carpet, as for a passage
17.  another word for rocker
18.  slang do a runner to run away in order to escape trouble or to avoid paying for something

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009
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Etymonline
Word Origin & History

runner
c.1300, from run (v.). Meaning "smuggler" first recorded 1721; sense of "embroidered cloth for a table" is from 1889. Runner-up is from 1842, originally in dog racing.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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American Heritage
Science Dictionary
runner  [%PREMIUM_LINK%]     (rŭn'ər)  Pronunciation Key 
A slender stem that grows horizontally and puts down roots to form new plants. Strawberries spread by runners. Also called stolon. Compare bulb, corm, rhizome, tuber.

The American Heritage® Science Dictionary
Copyright © 2002. Published by Houghton Mifflin. All rights reserved.
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Encyclopedia Britannica
Encyclopedia

runner

any of certain species of fishes in the family Carangidae (order Perciformes), which also includes the jacks, amberjacks, and pompanos. The blue runner (Caranx crysos) is a shiny, greenish or bluish fish of the Atlantic. Like others in the family, blue runners have deeply forked tails. They are popular game fish that reach lengths of 60 cm (2 feet)

Learn more about runner with a free trial on Britannica.com.

Encyclopedia Britannica, 2008. Encyclopedia Britannica Online.
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Example sentences
The feet of a ballet dancer, a long distance runner, a place kicker.
Create a merry scene along your dinner table runner.
One yellow star for a runner, and rows of blue stars for more runners, keep a
  line of watchers.
No runner tracks in this year's snow looped near it.
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