From King Dictionary of Contemporary Englishrubrub1 /rʌb/ ●●● S2 verb (rubbed, rubbing) 1 [intransitive, transitive]RUB to move your hand, or something such as a cloth, backwards and forwards over a surface while pressing firmlystrokerub your nose/chin/eyes/forehead etc She yawned and rubbed her eyes.rub something with something She began rubbing her hair with a towel. You’ll have to rub harder if you want to get it clean. I hurriedly rubbed myself dry.see thesaurus at touch2 [intransitive, transitive]RUB to make something press against something else and move it aroundrub something against/on something She stood by the oven, rubbing one bare foot against the other.rub against The cat purred loudly, rubbing against her legs.rub something together We tried to make a fire by rubbing two pieces of wood together. He rubbed his hands together with embarrassment.3 [intransitive, transitive]RUB if shoes, clothes, or parts of a machine rub, they move around while pressing against another surface, often causing pain or damage Badly fitting shoes are bound to rub.rub against/on The front left fender was smashed and rubbing against the wheel. The skin under my sock was rubbed raw (=the skin had come off).4 [transitive always + adverb/preposition]RUB to put a substance into or onto a surface by pressing it and moving it about with your fingers or something such as a cloth Can you rub some sun cream on my back for me?5 rub shoulders with somebody6 rub salt into the wound7 rub somebody up the wrong way8 be rubbing your hands9 rub somebody’s nose in it/in the dirt10 not have two pennies/halfpennies/beans to rub together rub along rub something/somebody ↔ down rub something ↔ in rub off rub something/somebody ↔ out→ See Verb table
Examples from the Corpus
rubRubbing a dock leaf on a nettle sting is said to get rid of the pain.The teacher rubbed against the blackboard, getting chalk all over his back.These days rucksacks are made with specially padded straps so that they do not rub against the shoulders.Sethe rubbed and rubbed, pressing the work cloth and the stony curves that made up his knee.Had the ex-scumnik's laboriously acquired veneer rubbed away, though, at the prospect of mayhem?If you rub hard the knives will become really shiny.I had to rub hard to get the marks off.Alice yawned and rubbed her eyes.Ann woke up and rubbed her eyes.Scathach stirred, sat up and rubbed his eyes, blinking at the dawn, scratching his beard.Colin yawned and rubbed his eyes.Bill had fallen on the path and was rubbing his knee.Rodriguez rubbed his leg to ease the pain.A fragment was rubbed into the eyes, causing them to water copiously.Tom spread sun cream onto the baby's back and began to rub it in.Place the block oil-side down into some jeweller's rouge powder, then rub it on to the mirror edge.When the cat rubs its back against my legs, I know it's hungry.Badly fitting shoes will rub more painfully if you are not wearing socks.Could you rub my neck? It's really stiff.This seatbelt is rubbing my shoulder.He rubbed polish in little circles on to the shoes that Erlich thought were impressively polished.precious stones that have been rubbed smooth and set in goldRub the bowl with garlic before adding the breadcrumbs.She washed her hands and face, rubbing the lipstick away with a flannel.Swallowing convulsively, she rubbed vigorously at her face and hair with a large bath towel until her skin burned.About once a month I rub wax into the table to keep it in good condition.The teacher turned and rubbed what he had written off the board.rub your nose/chin/eyes/forehead etcRip rubbed his chin, and noticed that he had a long, scraggly beard.Emily rubbed her eyes as the figures swam before her, that didn't make sense.He got up and rubbed his eyes dry.A child might not complain of itching, but she might be rubbing her eyes or nose repeatedly.Her eyes grew accustomed to the dark and she pushed back her heavy plaits of hair, rubbing her eyes tiredly.I rubbed my eyes to clear them, but the whiteness covered everything.The moments when the judge removed his glasses and rubbed his eyes were adding up.rubbed ... hands togetherI put a few drops on my palms and rubbed my hands together.Freddie rubbed his hands together and made a sign to his waiting friends.He had sighed, rubbed his hands together and sat down on a kitchen chair.Wishart rubbed his hands together, cracking his knuckles as he tried to control his anger.Lee rubbed his long-fingered hands together; he wondered where to start.rub against/onShe interrupts her naps to rub against a tree, and that only when the mood hits her.This is the smell of a herbal rub on great Achilles.I noticed that my swaying foot had rubbed against him, leaving a dusty mark on his navy trousers.Joe stared down at the large, rough hand gently rubbing against him.These shoes rub against my heels.Do not top or shear the plant; instead, remove whole branches that are dead or rubbing against others.I rub on soothing calamine lotion, then don a cotton turtleneck to keep myself from scratching.A properly made tie keeps your standard rose safely secured to, but not rubbing against, the stake.During these movements the object happens to rub against the wicker of the bassinet.
rubrub2 noun 1 give somebody/something a rub2 there’s/here’s the rub
Examples from the Corpus
rublemon and ginger rubThat, of course, had been the rub.The lake you say you have found in me suffers a climate entirely of my own making-and there is the rub.But here's the rub - there had been one here before!To sleep: perchance to dream: aye, there's the rub.
Origin rub1 (1300-1400) Perhaps from Low German rubben