From Wiktionary, the free dictionary
Jump to navigation Jump to search
See also: Reaper


English Wikipedia has an article on:
Two contestants at a Belgian reaping competition.


  • (American English) IPA(key): /ˈɹiːpɚ/
  • (file)
  • Rhymes: -iːpə(ɹ)

Etymology 1[edit]

From Middle English reper, repare, repere, *riper (the last, attested only in surnames Ryper, Riper, etc.), from Old English rīpere (reaper), equivalent to reap +‎ -er.


reaper (plural reapers)

  1. One who reaps; a person employed to harvest crops from the fields by reaping.
  2. A machine used to harvest crops.
  3. (often capitalized) Ellipsis of Grim Reaper.
    • 1976, Buck Dharma (lyrics and music), “Don't Fear the Reaper”, performed by Blue Öyster Cult:
      Don't fear the Reaper / We'll be able to fly
    • 1999, Karl S. Guthke, The Gender of Death: A Cultural History in Art and Literature, page 7:
      Why is the Grim Reaper a man? True, the noun ending would theoretically allow us to visualize the reaper as a woman as well, but we don't.
  4. The recluse spider (Loxosceles and Sicarius spp.).
Derived terms[edit]
Related terms[edit]

Etymology 2[edit]


reaper (plural reapers)

  1. (India, obsolete) Each of the small laths laid across the rafters of a sloping roof to bear the tiles.