(1)   Growing profusely
"Rank jungle vegetation"
(2)   Conspicuously and outrageously bad or reprehensible
"A crying shame"
"An egregious lie"
"Flagrant violation of human rights"
"A glaring error"
"Gross ineptitude"
"Gross injustice"
"Rank treachery"
(3)   Very fertile; producing profuse growth
"Rank earth"
(4)   Very offensive in smell or taste
"A rank cigar"


(5)   The ordinary members of an organization (such as the enlisted soldiers of an army)
"The strike was supported by the union rank and file"
"He rose from the ranks to become a colonel"
(6)   The body of members of an organization or group
"They polled their membership"
"They found dissension in their own ranks"
"He joined the ranks of the unemployed"
(7)   A row or line of people (especially soldiers or police) standing abreast of one another
"The entrance was guarded by ranks of policemen"
(8)   Position in a social hierarchy
"The British are more aware of social status than Americans are"
(9)   Relative status
"His salary was determined by his rank and seniority"


(10)   Assign a rank or rating to
"How would you rank these students?"
"The restaurant is rated highly in the food guide"
(11)   Take precedence or surpass others in rank


  1. Having a very strong and bad odor.
  2. Gross, disgusting.
  3. Complete, used as an intensifier (usually negative).
    I am a rank amateur as a wordsmith.

Etymology 2

rank "line, row" from reng, rang, ranc "line, row, rank" (Modern rang), of origin, from hring "ring" from from . Akin to (h)ring, hring, hring, hrincg "ring", hringr "ring, circle, queue, sword; ship". More at ring


  1. position of a person, place, thing, or idea in relation to others based on a shared property such as physical location, population, or quality
    Based on your test scores, you have a rank of 23.
  2. a level in an organization such as the military
    Private First Class (PFC) is the lowest rank in the Marines.
  3. a level in a scientific taxonomy system
    Phylum is the taxonomic rank below kingdom and above class.
  4. The lines or rows of people in an organization
    He rose up through the ranks of the company from mailroom clerk to CEO.
  5. One of the horizontal lines of squares on a chessboard
  6. In a pipe organ, a set of pipes of a certain quality for which each pipe corresponds to one key or pedal.
  7. The dimensionality of an array.


  1. to give a person, place, thing, or idea a rank
    Their defense is ranked third in the league