Meaning of “rank” in the English Dictionary

"rank" in English

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uk /ræŋk/ us /ræŋk/

rank noun (POSITION)

C1 [ C or U ] a position in an organization, such as the army, showing the importance of the person having it:

senior/high/junior/low rank
He has just been promoted to the rank of captain.
Ministers of cabinet rank receive a higher salary than other ministers.
Having a large income is one of the advantages of rank (= high position).

[ C or U ] a particular position, higher or lower than others:

He's in the front/first rank of (= one of the best) international tennis players.
Consumer preferences were placed in rank order from 1 to 5.
ranks [ plural ]

the members of a group or organization:

Party ranks have swelled by nearly 300,000.
Marty has joined the ranks of the (= become) unemployed.
The party leadership seems to be losing support in the ranks.
rise from/through the ranks

to be moved up from a low level position in an organization to a higher one:

He rose through the ranks to become a general.
He joined the company in 2008 and has been rising through the ranks ever since.

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rank noun (ROW)

[ C ] a row, especially of people or things standing side by side:

The front rank of the riot squad raised their shields.
literary We could see nothing for miles but serried ranks (= many close rows) of fir trees.

[ C ] a place where taxis wait for passengers:

There were no taxis at the taxi/cab rank.


uk /ræŋk/ us /ræŋk/

rankverb [ I or T, usually + adv/prep ]

uk /ræŋk/ us /ræŋk/

C1 to have a position higher or lower than others, or to be considered to have such a position:

A captain ranks (= has a position) above a lieutenant.
My entry was ranked third in the flower show.
She ranked the bottles in order of size along the shelf.
In my opinion, he ranks among the theatre's greatest actors.
2012 must rank as (= be) the most difficult year for Europe since the 30s.

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(Definition of “rank” from the Cambridge Advanced Learner’s Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)

"rank" in American English

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ranknoun [ C/U ]

us /ræŋk/

rank noun [ C/U ] (POSITION)

a position in relation to others higher or lower, showing the importance or authority of the person having it:

[ C ] You get more privileges if you have a higher rank.
[ U ] He rose quickly in rank.
plural noun us /ˈræŋ·kɪŋz/

She has been near the top of the 800-meter rankings for the past 13 years.


us /ræŋk/

rank adjective (SMELLY)

smelling very unpleasant:

a rank odor

(Definition of “rank” from the Cambridge Academic Content Dictionary © Cambridge University Press)

"rank" in Business English

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uk /ræŋk/ us

[ C or U ] a position in an organization such as the government, army, etc. that shows the importance of someone's job compared to other positions:

high/low/middle rank The committee usually consists of people of a higher rank than the person being interviewed.
the top/highest rank
Despite his lack of Cabinet rank, U.N. diplomats said that the US representative would be listened to carefully.

[ S ] a particular position in a list that shows how important, good, profitable, etc. something is compared to other things of the same type:

the first/top/highest rank of sth A big merger would put the firm into the first rank of global companies.
fall/slip in rank The fund has slipped in rank to eighth position in the Nasdaq.
the bottom/lowest rank
ranks [ plural ]

the members of a group or organization:

Party ranks have grown by nearly 100,000.
the ranks of sth The deal will help them join the ranks of the established leaders in the mobile phone market.

the ordinary employees in a company, rather than the managers:

Solidarity in the ranks has produced an agreement that protects jobs for our communities.
rise from/through the ranks

to keep moving up from a low position in an organization to higher ones:

He joined the company in 2000 and has been rising through the ranks ever since.


uk /ræŋk/ us

[ I or T ] to have or be put into a position on a list of other similar things or people, that compares their importance, level of success, etc.:

rank third/thirtieth, etc. The chemical company will rank 17th among U.S. chemical companies based on sales.
be ranked third/thirtieth, etc. The Japan fund has gone from strength to strength and is ranked fourth in its sector.
rank (sth) among sth The district ranks among the bottom ten in the state for residents' income.
She was ranked among the 25 most powerful business women in the world.
rank low/high Energy costs rank high in importance in consumer's minds.
rank above/below sth England ranked below many other European countries for employment.

[ T ] to make a list of things in order, comparing their importance, level of success, quality, etc.:

We rank a broad range of stocks using both value characteristics and growth characteristics.
When facing a number of challenges, it is often useful to rank their importance so appropriate attention can be provided.
rank sth according to/by sth Cities were ranked according to how many international conferences they hosted.

Phrasal verb(s)

(Definition of “rank” from the Cambridge Business English Dictionary © Cambridge University Press)