• WordNet 3.6
    • v riff play riffs
    • v riff look through a book or other written material "He thumbed through the report","She leafed through the volume"
    • n riff a jazz ostinato; usually provides a background for a solo improvisation
    • n Riff a Berber living in northern Morocco
    • ***
Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
    • n riff The belly; the bowels.
    • n riff An obsolete form of reef.—2. A rapid or riffle. See riffle.
    • n riff An obsolete form of reef.
    • ***


In literature:

We have foreigners and riff-raff more than enough.
"France in the Nineteenth Century" by Elizabeth Latimer
But yance they hang some riff-raff for him it will soon be forgotten.
"The Shadow of a Crime A Cumbrian Romance" by Hall Caine
They're the riff-raff of all Europe.
"Truxton King" by George Barr McCutcheon
In the north, round Fez and Taza, there was severe fighting, spreading thence to the Riff country.
"Morocco" by S.L. Bensusan
This was just before Spain's recent Riff Campaign.
"Ranching, Sport and Travel" by Thomas Carson
I thought he did not seem quite so anxious about fighting as he had been when we were off the Riff coast.
"Will Weatherhelm" by W.H.G. Kingston
The punishment inflicted on the Riff pirates was soon forgotten, and they continued their depredations on British commerce.
"How Britannia Came to Rule the Waves" by W.H.G. Kingston
I saw the Riffs who were in the Soko pass by.
"Bye-Ways" by Robert Smythe Hichens
This riff-raff, that left you in the lurch without ceremony to run after the first hunter that whistled to them!
"'Clear the Track'" by Elisabeth Buerstenbinder (AKA E. Werner)
But mostly the motley company was of the riff-raff order of humanity.
"Turns about Town" by Robert Cortes Holliday

In poetry:

The Negro
with the trumpet at his lips
whose jacket
Has a fine one-button roll,
does not know
upon what riff the music slips
"Trumpet Player" by Langston Hughes
They gaed fast doun the hill, their custom fell aff;
Their hoose it was haunted by a' the riff-raff,
Wha watch'd weel the time whan Mysie was fou;
An' mony a lawin' her haun' never drew.
"Sketches of Village Character In Days "O' Langsyne"" by Janet Hamilton
or fired: be with us: we will blow our best,
our sad wil riffs come easy in that case,
thinking you over,
knowing you resting, who was reborn to rest,
your gorgeous sentence is done. Nothing's the same,
sir,—taking cover.
"Dream Song 39: Goodbye, sir, & fare well. You're in the clear" by John Berryman
Long, sitting by their watchfires, shall the Kabyles tell the tale
Of thy dash from Ben Halifa on the fat Metidja vale;
How thou swept'st the desert over, bearing down the wild El Riff,
From eastern Beni Salah to western Ouad Shelif;
"Abd-El-Kader At Toulon Or, The Caged Hawk" by William Makepeace Thackeray

In news:

From public sex to "pickup lines" to poop, right-wingers are obsessed with raunchy riffs about Occupy Wall Street.
" Spinner " magazine just released a list of the Top 50 Greatest Guitar Riffs in rock history.
John Stockfish , the bassist responsible for the well-known riff that carried Gordon Lightfoot's 'Sundown' to success internationally, has died.
This riff on spaghetti westerns gets a Japanese twist as two Samurai fight it out over a batch of gold.
This dish is a riff on a delicious creation at one of my favorite Italian restaurants.
"Megamind" resembles (or perhaps I should say, "riffs") the Superman mythos in a lot of ways.
You may also know him for hosting The AV Club 's Pop Pilgrims, for producing Chicago Underground Comedy, or perhaps for one of his most-beloved riffs on the best dinosaur.
Author's note: This recipe is a riff on Fergus Henderson's dish served in his restaurant in London.
Threw down rap verses on top of Joe Perry's guitar riffs on its 1986 remake of Aerosmith's "Walk This Way," many bands have endeavored to mesh hip-hop lyricism with rock wallop.
They're Chris Yeo 's riff on kung pao, a Szechuan dish made with stir-fried diced chicken and chiles.
We'll only tell you that it's from Sweden and that it's a riff on Apple Store robberies that happen occasionally.
Jade's Weekly Riff: One Step Closer.
"Future Holds" features gritty guitar riffs, driving rhythms.
John Madden and Ol Parker riff on 'Marigold Hotel'.
Colbert Riffs on Petraeus "Love Pentagon ," Gets Help From Susan Lucci.