• The Oak and the Reeds
    The Oak and the Reeds
  • WordNet 3.6
    • n reed a musical instrument that sounds by means of a vibrating reed
    • n reed a vibrator consisting of a thin strip of stiff material that vibrates to produce a tone when air streams over it "the clarinetist fitted a new reed onto his mouthpiece"
    • n Reed United States physician who proved that yellow fever is transmitted by mosquitoes (1851-1902)
    • n Reed United States journalist who reported on the October Revolution from Petrograd in 1917; founded the Communist Labor Party in America in 1919; is buried in the Kremlin in Moscow (1887-1920)
    • n reed tall woody perennial grasses with hollow slender stems especially of the genera Arundo and Phragmites
    • ***

Additional illustrations & photos:

Fish in reeds Fish in reeds
Baby sitting on a reed Baby sitting on a reed
Baby sitting on reed leaf Baby sitting on reed leaf

Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
  • Interesting fact: The ridges on the sides of coins are called reeding or milling.
    • Reed (Weaving) A frame having parallel flat stripe of metal or reed, between which the warp threads pass, set in the swinging lathe or batten of a loom for beating up the weft; a sley. See Batten.
    • Reed A musical instrument made of the hollow joint of some plant; a rustic or pastoral pipe. "Arcadian pipe, the pastoral reed Of Hermes."
    • Reed (Bot) A name given to many tall and coarse grasses or grasslike plants, and their slender, often jointed, stems, such as the various kinds of bamboo, and especially the common reed of Europe and North America (Phragmites communis).
    • Reed (Mus) A small piece of cane or wood attached to the mouthpiece of certain instruments, and set in vibration by the breath. In the clarinet it is a single fiat reed; in the oboe and bassoon it is double, forming a compressed tube.
    • Reed (Mining) A tube containing the train of powder for igniting the charge in blasting.
    • Reed An arrow, as made of a reed.
    • Reed (Mus) One of the thin pieces of metal, the vibration of which produce the tones of a melodeon, accordeon, harmonium, or seraphine; also attached to certain sets or registers of pipes in an organ.
    • a Reed rēd Red. "Sweet rose, whose hue, angry and brave."
    • v. & n Reed Same as Rede.
    • Reed (Arch) Same as Reeding.
    • Reed Straw prepared for thatching a roof.
    • n Reed The fourth stomach of a ruminant; rennet.
    • ***
Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
    • n reed Any tall broad-leafed grass growing on the margins of streams or in other wet places; especially, any grass of one of the genera Phragmites, Arundo, or Ammophila. The common reed is Phragmites communis, a stately grass from 5 to 12 feet high, found in nearly all parts of the world. It serves by its creeping rootstocks to fix alluvial banks; its stems form perhaps the most durable thatch, and are otherwise useful; and it is planted for ornament. See the generic names, and phrases below. Compare reed-grass.
    • n reed Some one of other more or less similar plants. See phrases below.
    • n reed A musical pipe of reed or cane, having a mouthpiece made by slitting the tube near a joint, and usually several finger-holes; a rustic or pastoral pipe; hence, figuratively, pastoral poetry. See cut under pipe.
    • n reed In music: In musical instruments of the oboe and clarinet classes, and in all kinds of organs, a thin elastic plate or tongue of reed, wood, or metal, so fitted to an opening into a pipe as nearly to close it, and so arranged that, when a current of air is directed through the opening, the reed is drawn into or driven against it so as to close it, but immediately springs back by its own elasticity, only to be pressed forward again by the air, thus producing a tone, either directly by its own vibrations or indirectly by the sympathetic vibrations of the column of air in the pipe. When the reed is of metal, the pitch of the tone depends chiefly on its size; but when of reed or cane, it may be so combined with a tube that the pitch shall depend chiefly on the size of the air-column. A free reed is one that vibrates in the opening without touching its edges; a beating or striking reed is one that extends slightly beyond the opening. In orchestral instruments, the wood wind group includes several reed instruments, which have either double reeds (two wooden reeds which strike against each other, as in the oboe, the bassoon, the English horn, etc.), or a single reed (a wooden reed striking against an opening in a wooden mouthpiece or beak, as in the clarinet, the basset-horn, etc.). A pipe-organ usually contains one or more sets of reed-pipes, the tongues of which are nearly always striking reeds of brass. (See reed-pipe.) A reed-organ is properly a collection of several sets of reeds the tongues of which are free reeds of brass. (See reed-organ.) In the brass wind group of instruments, with but few exceptions, the tone is produced by the player's lips acting as free membranous reeds within the cup of the mouthpiece. The mechanism of the human voice, also, is essentially a reed-instrument, the vocal cords being simply free membranous reeds which may be stretched within the tube of the larynx. The quality of the tone produced by a reed varies indefinitely, according to the material and character of the reed itself, the method in which it is set in vibration, and especially the arrangement of the tube or cavity with which it is connected. The accompanying fig. 1 shows the construction of an organreed: a is the reed-block, which in use is inserted in its proper slot in the reedboard; b, the metal tongue, which is set in sonorous vibration when air is forced through the opening c. Fig. 2 shows the mouthpiece of a clarinet, in which a is the reed, held to the body of the mouthpiece by the splitbands b, which are drawn tight by the screws c. Air entering between the reed and the margin of an opening which it covers causes it to produce a musical tone, the pitch of which is varied partly by the position of the mouthpiece in the mouth and partly by the action of the keys. Fig. 3 shows the mouthpiece of an oboe, and similar reeds are used for bassoons and bagpipes. The reed is made of two counterparts of the same shape bound together by the thread adjective The lower and middle parts of the mouthpiece are circular in cross-section, but the upper part c, the reed proper, is flattened. Air forced through this opening causes the reed to emit a harsh tone, which is softened in quality by the tube of the instrument.
    • n reed In reed-instruments of the oboe class, and in both pipe- and reed-organs, the entire mechanism immediately surrounding the reed proper, consisting of the tube or box the opening or eschallot of which the reed itself covers or fills, together with any other attachments, like the tuning-wire of reed-pipes. (See reed-organ and reed-pipe.) In the clarinet the analogous part is called the beak or mouthpiece.
    • n reed Any reed-instrument as a whole, tike an oboe or a clarinet: as, the reeds of an orchestra.
    • n reed In organ-building, same as reed-stop.
    • n reed A missile weapon; an arrow or a javelin: used poetically.
    • n reed Reeds or straw prepared for thatching; thatch: a general term: as, a bundle of reed.
    • n reed A long slender elastic rod of whalebone, ratan, or steel, of which several are inserted in a woman's skirt to expand or stiffen it.
    • n reed In mining, any hollow plant-stem which can be filled with powder and put into the cavity left. by the withdrawal of the needle, to set off the charge at the bottom. Such devices are nearly or entirely superseded by the safety-fuse. Also called spire.
    • n reed An instrument used for pressing down the threads of the woof in tapestry, so as to keep the surface well together.
    • n reed A weavers' instrument for separating the threads of the warp, and for beating the weft up to the web. It is made of parallel slips of metal or reed, called dents, which resemble the teeth of a comb. The dents are fixed at their ends into two parallel pieces of wood set a few inches apart.
    • n reed In heraldry, a bearing representing a weavers' reed. See slay.
    • n reed A Hebrew and Assyrian unit, of length, equal to 6 cubits, generally taken as being from 124 to 130 inches.
    • n reed Same as rennet-bag.
    • n reed In arch., carp., etc., a small convex molding; in the plural, same as reeding, 2.
    • reed To thatch. Compare reed, n., 6.
    • reed In carp., arch., etc., to fashion into, or decorate with, reeds or reeding.
    • reed An obsolete form of red (still extant in the surname Reed).
    • n reed An obsolete form of read.
    • reed To draw (warp-threads) through the reed of a loom.
    • reed To furnish with reeds, as an organ.
    • ***
Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
    • v.t., v.i Reed rēd (Spens.) to deem.
    • n Reed rēd the common English name of certain tall grasses, growing in moist or marshy places, and having a very hard or almost woody culm: a musical pipe anciently made of a reed: the sounding part of several musical instruments, as the clarinet, bassoon, oboe, and bagpipe: the speaking part of the organ, though made of metal: the appliance in weaving for separating the threads of the warp, and for beating the weft up to the web: a tube containing the powder-train leading to the blast-hole: a piece of whalebone, &c., for stiffening the skirt or waist of a woman's dress:
    • v.t Reed to thatch
    • n Reed rēd (poet.) a missile weapon: reeds or straw for thatch: a measuring reed
    • ***


  • Aesop
    “The little reed, bending to the force of the wind, soon stood upright again when the storm had passed over.”
  • Kevin Costner
    Kevin Costner
    “I'd like to put on buckskins and a ponytail and go underwater with a reed, hiding from the Indians... To me, that's sexy!”
  • Alice James
    Alice James
    “It is an immense loss to have all robust and sustaining expletives refined away from one! At. moments of trial refinement is a feeble reed to lean upon.”


Broken reed - If something or someone fails to give you the support you were hoping for, they are a broken reed.


Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
AS. hreód,; akin to D. riet, G. riet, ried, OHG. kriot, riot,
Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
A.S. hreód; Dut. riet, Ger. ried.


In literature:

Lieutenant Hayter Reed was the adjutant.
"A Soldier's Life" by Edwin G. Rundle
Beatrice and Helen Reed!
"Lucy Maud Montgomery Short Stories, 1904" by Lucy Maud Montgomery
From time to time rises a hot breath of air that shakes the thin reeds.
"The Temptation of St. Antony" by Gustave Flaubert
The crackling of the duck-boat through the reeds was answered by a roar like the breaking of a great wave.
"The Adventures of Bobby Orde" by Stewart Edward White
It certainly did not think of marrying, and only hoped to obtain leave to lie among the reeds and drink some of the swamp-water.
"Children's Literature" by Charles Madison Curry
That was not the last time he saw Jane Reed.
"The Transformation of Job" by Frederick Vining Fisher
The sketch of this Coptic reed, Fig.
"Ancient Egyptian and Greek Looms" by H. Ling Roth
W. Reed, Springfield, Mass.
"The American Missionary - Volume 52, No. 1, March, 1898" by Various
Reed is behind this; Reed and the City Council.
"The Loyalist" by James Francis Barrett
A reed shaken by the wind?
"The New Testament of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ." by Various

In poetry:

"Her shape was like the reed so sleek,
So taper, strait, and fair;
Her dimpled smile, her blushing cheek,
How charming sweet they were!
"Nancy of the Vale" by William Shenstone
Dead thoughts revive, and he that heeds
Shall hear, as by a spirit led,
A song among the golden reeds:
"The gods are vanished but not dead!"
"The Return of the Year" by Archibald Lampman
And touched her lips with wild-flower wine,
And changed her body slowly,
Till, in soft reeds of song and shine,
Her life was hidden wholly.
"Syrinx" by Henry Kendall
What can the tedious tomes bestow,
To soothe the miseries they show?
What like the bliss for him decreed,
Who tends his flock and tunes his reed?
"To a Lady of Quality, Fitting Up Her Library" by William Shenstone
Not to weaken water's gentle fall,
Carefully cleanse out the channels all;
Salamander, snake, and rush, and reed,--
All destroy,--each monster and each weed.
"Book Of the Parsees - The Bequest Of The Ancient Persian Faith" by Johann Wolfgang von Goethe
Yet since man's scepters are as frail as reeds,
And thorny all their crowns, bloudie their weeds;
I, who am Truth, turn into truth their deeds:
Was ever grief like mine?
"The Sacrifice" by George Herbert

In news:

Grant will help final stage of Reed/Niland.
Shelley Reed, Tulip (after Marrell), 2009 oil on canvas, 12 inch diameter.
( JASON REED, Reuters / August 28, 2012 ).
Lawrence Shaul and The Aristocats Tutti-Frutti Reed 0:17:55 MP3 ).
Montgomery police charge woman in bizarre Walter Reed hit-and-run incident.
Caregiver Desiree West hands Jacque Reed, left, a bowl of applesauce at Reed's home on Friday June 29, 2012 in Everson.
The preseason No 12 nationally ranked Texas A&M women's basketball team hosts Arkansas- Fort Smith in an exhibition game on Thursday at 7 pm (CT) at Reed Arena.
Memorial Services for Dorothy "Dottye" Jean Foss , 80, of Mountain Home, will be 1:00 pm, Saturday, Feb 5, 2011, at First United Methodist Church, with Reverend Jerry Reed, officiating.
The Mets' most successful pitcher, Rick Reed, left the field after taking a line drive off a wrist.
Rep Tom Reed, R-Corning, at a Farmington Chamber of Commerce dinner earlier this year.
Congressman Reed Defends Swimming in Sea of Galilee on Congressional Trip.
Tom Reed & Wife Jean.
Reed on dip in Sea of Galilee .
Randy and Tonya Godwin of McDonough announce the engagement of their daughter, Haley Michelle Godwin of Athens, to Tyler Wayne Reed of Athens, son of Wayne and Lisa Reed of Lawrenceville.
Reed Saxon/Associated Press Boxer Oscar De La Hoya hung up his gloves on Tuesday with a 39-6 career record.

In science:

In ref. Molloy and Reed propose a specific method of constructing graphs with a given pn .
Defining statistical ensembles of random graphs
Molloy, M. and Reed, B., 1995. A critical point for random graphs with a given degree sequence.
Random graphs as models of networks
Reed, A solution to the invariant subspace problem, Bul l.
Random matrices, free probability and the invariant subspace problem relative to a von Neumann Algebra
The result of Molloy and Reed that, in the supercritical case, the second largest component has size O(log n) corresponds to Theorem 3.12(ii); again there is no strict implication, but the kernels κ corresponding to the graphs studied by Molloy and Reed satisfy inf κ(x, y) > 0.
The phase transition in inhomogeneous random graphs
Reed, A critical point for random graphs with a given degree sequence, Random Struct.
The phase transition in inhomogeneous random graphs