adjective, rip·er, rip·est.
- having arrived at such a stage of growth or development as to be ready for reaping, gathering, eating, or use, as grain or fruit; completely matured.
- resembling such fruit, as in ruddiness and fullness: ripe, red lips.
- advanced to the point of being in the best condition for use, as cheese or beer.
- fully grown or developed, as animals when ready to be killed and used for food.
- arrived at the highest or a high point of development or excellence; mature.
- of mature judgment or knowledge: ripe scholars; a ripe mind.
- characterized by full development of body or mind: of ripe years.
- (of time) advanced: a ripe old age.
- (of ideas, plans, etc.) ready for action, execution, etc.
- (of people) fully prepared or ready to do or undergo something: He was ripe for a change in jobs.
- fully or sufficiently advanced; ready enough; auspicious: The time is ripe for a new foreign policy.
- ready for some operation or process: a ripe abscess.
- Archaic. drunk: reeling ripe.
- (of fruit, grain, etc) mature and ready to be eaten or used; fully developed
- mature enough to be eaten or usedripe cheese
- fully developed in mind or body
- resembling ripe fruit, esp in redness or fullnessa ripe complexion
- (postpositive foll by for) ready or eager (to undertake or undergo an action)
- (postpositive foll by for) suitable; right or opportunethe time is not yet ripe
- mature in judgment or knowledge
- advanced but healthy (esp in the phrase a ripe old age)
- complete; thorough
- excessive; exorbitant
- slang slightly indecent; risqué
Old English ripe “ready for reaping, fit for eating, mature,” from West Germanic *ripijaz (cf. Old Saxon ripi, Middle Dutch ripe, Dutch rijp, Old High German rifi, German reif); related to Old English repan “to reap” (see reap). Meaning “ready for some action or effect” is from 1590s. Related: Ripely; ripeness.
In addition to the idiom beginning with ripe
- ripe old age
- time is ripe