Definition of ramp in English:



  • 1A sloping surface joining two different levels, as at the entrance or between floors of a building.

    ‘a wheelchair ramp’
    • ‘The temple rises from the valley floor in three colonnaded terraces connected by ramps.’
    • ‘Michelle rolled my wheelchair up the ramp on the stage, and I got to the microphone.’
    • ‘Remember that ramps require a building permit, and the construction specifications can vary widely between jurisdictions.’
    • ‘The funds will be used to develop the area at the back of the community hall into a recreational area incorporating ramps for wheelchair users.’
    • ‘A total of ten ramps connect the three levels, creating spatial continuity and flow.’
    • ‘Some were housed in normal laboratory cages, while others stayed in more interesting pens, with multiple levels, ramps, bridges, tunnels and even a climbing chain.’
    • ‘All the amenities are there, and Church House only needs a short wheelchair ramp to the entrance door and is more useful than any of the proposed annexes which would be built on to the church.’
    • ‘A gently sloping pathway to a lower garden area works as a wheelchair ramp, but it also makes a great road for Amrita's tricycle.’
    • ‘We raised the level of the veranda to the first floor level and incorporated ramps into the new veranda's design.’
    • ‘I threw the gun away and ran up the ramp to the second floor.’
    • ‘Any money raised on Saturday at the Scout Hall in Kingsdown Park, Stratton, will be put towards a disabled toilet and wheelchair ramps at the venue.’
    • ‘Some of the original buildings were connected inside, with ramps to accommodate the varying floor levels.’
    • ‘To achieve this, he used a variable balance of forms, with columns, terraces, ramps and screens in a range of colours.’
    • ‘They also arrange for home remodeling, such as building ramps for wheelchairs, and, in some areas, curb-to-curb transportation.’
    • ‘The Romans were fond of building enormous ramps to allow them to walk over the walls of an enemy's strong point.’
    • ‘Picnic tables are built with supports and ramps to the entrance and guide rails are provided all round.’
    • ‘Mrs Agnes Simms, of Holme Mill Lane, had been trying to get a wheelchair ramp fitted in her garden for the past three years.’
    • ‘Yes, I built a handicap ramp to access my building, for my dog.’
    • ‘The tree provides structural support for the ramp and platform through the use of a cable, arch, and railing suspension system.’
    • ‘They would also like to see the playground levelled and a ramp installed.’
    1. 1.1A movable set of steps for entering or leaving an aircraft.
      • ‘Firefighters used fire hoses to clean the aircraft and the ramp.’
      • ‘They hoist their bags on to the ramp, step up into the back of the aircraft and pass their bags forward to the cargo hold.’
      • ‘The technique is not recommended for delicate equipment and the trick is to complete the offload without tipping the aircraft on its tail and damaging the ramp.’
      • ‘I stumbled up the boarding ramp and entered the code sequence that would open the main hatch for me.’
      • ‘He jumped down the ramp two steps at a time, and took a few quick steps toward the airport before checking himself and turning around.’
      • ‘The aircraft finished final checks, taxied from the ramp toward the taxiway and proceeded to ruin my day.’
      • ‘‘Lu, keep in touch,’ Andy said over the crowd as he made his way down the ramp.’
      • ‘There was no flying, of course, as the ramps, runways and aircraft were also ice covered.’
      • ‘As we approached the ramp, the aircraft started to pull to the left.’
      • ‘Jaini took a step down the ramp when it fully extended itself.’
      • ‘They proposed an immediate increase in the numbers of federal air marshals on flights and in airports, extra screening of passengers and baggage and more restrictive access to ramps leading to the aircraft.’
      • ‘Gregory and I stepped off the ramp as I greeted my guests.’
    2. 1.2British A transverse ridge in a road to control the speed of vehicles.
      • ‘Perhaps if the council used the funding it has wasted on installing speed ramps all around the estate, its maths might have added up to a better figure.’
      • ‘Speeding traffic and parking was also an issue with Martin Kavanagh who wanted ramps to control speeding and lots of them.’
      • ‘The letter noted that if ramps and speed limits signs within a housing development were deemed necessary the planning service would impose such a condition on the planning approval.’
      • ‘Since Horse Close was equipped with speed ramps, this estate has not been utilised as much as before.’
      • ‘But the ramps on the Woodhead road are far in excess of what might be needed, and completely ‘over the top’.’
      • ‘Well here was a proposal to put speed ramps in Cartron already agreed to in the past couple of months.’
      • ‘He has also said that speed ramps must be introduced to the street to calm the traffic that passes through.’
      • ‘But former councillor Jo Price who lives at the bottom of High Street said the ramps controlled speeding drivers.’
      • ‘Speed ramps were introduced during the last week in some of the residential areas of the town.’
      • ‘The volume and speed of traffic through the North Sligo town has led to increased calls for pedestrian crossings and speed ramps from local people.’
      • ‘Two speed ramps will be constructed at the Ardreigh Road from the railway bridge up to the Carlow Road.’
      • ‘Speaking to a local resident, the issue of the new speed ramps came up.’
      • ‘If we cannot control this, we're going to have to have ramps on all the roads.’
      • ‘Last Wednesday night, the news came through that the speed ramps will be put in by the end of November.’
      • ‘Speed ramps along College Road, put in to try and dissuade boy racers who use the road to cut from one side of the town to the other, have been branded useless.’
      • ‘Paddy O'Callaghan said that adults and children were crossing the road on a speed ramp.’
      • ‘He also said that speed ramps were not appropriate but were a last resort as a speed control.’
      • ‘He said that he and his fellow councillors had been pressing the county council to install speed ramps at Manor Road, but to no avail.’
      • ‘Controversial speed ramps at the Woodstock Service Station in Athy will be lowered.’
      • ‘He turned off at high speed towards Dunton, near Laindon, and totally ignored speed ramps in one road.’
    3. 1.3North American An inclined slip road leading on to or off a main road or motorway.
      ‘an exit ramp’
      • ‘And seven people were arrested when they temporarily blocked an exit ramp off Interstate 280 in San Francisco.’
      • ‘Local roads, turn lanes and inter-change ramps, rest areas, and highway approaches were part of the improvement as well.’
      • ‘At the end of the exit ramp, go left for one-quarter mile to Forest Service Road 4832 and turn right.’
      • ‘But without that choice, you're on a circular highway without any exit ramps.’
      • ‘They also located individual subway and railroad stations and identified the entrance and exit ramps on the Moscow Ring Road, the automobile beltway that encircled the city.’
      • ‘The exit ramp from the motorway took me down to a set of lights, sadly however it took everyone else down too and a queue of vehicles was waiting to get through the lights.’
      • ‘It depicted a Jaguar, facing the exit ramp of the Main Street bridge.’
      • ‘This impedes movement of oncoming traffic, which builds up along the main ramp of the flyover.’
      • ‘Still others lobby for new roads, new highway exit ramps or new airports.’
      • ‘The buildings began to thin out as they left the industrial sector of the city and entered onto a ramp that would take them to the freeway and towards Chris's house.’
      • ‘The convoy's lead vehicles served to clear the route and prevent vehicles from entering from side streets, ramps, and other approaches.’
      • ‘Dad turned the car onto an exit ramp and entered a very nice neighborhood, one that you would see in an expensive part of California.’
      • ‘I walked down the on ramp from the deserted avenue and continued walking down the highway.’
      • ‘People shuffled out of his way, but finally he had to stop about halfway up the exit ramp leading to the overpass.’
      • ‘Brian flicked his blinker signal and descended the exit ramp.’
      • ‘He got into the left turning lane and drove onto the on ramp and onto the freeway.’
      • ‘One night a drunk driver mistook our driveway for a freeway ramp and stumbled into our basement.’
      • ‘As a young police officer I remember finding a car parked in the middle of the entry ramp to the interstate highway.’
      • ‘My car broke down on the way home, within a hundred yards of an entrance ramp to the interstate.’
      • ‘It had gotten dark early and the wind was howling and the rain was pouring as he mounted the ramp to the freeway that would take him home.’
    4. 1.4
      North American term for catwalk
  • 2An upward bend in a stair rail.

  • 3An electrical waveform in which the voltage increases or decreases linearly with time.

    ‘a voltage ramp’
    • ‘We applied voltage ramps from - 100 to + 100 mV to cell 1.’
    • ‘We measured recovery from inactivation during voltage ramps.’
    • ‘During the phase ramp, fringing field effects smooth the phase profile.’
    • ‘In fact, the reversal potentials were independent of the direction of voltage ramps.’
    • ‘To commence near-field studies we provided voltage ramps to extend the near-field fiber repeatedly toward the sample.’
  • 4British informal A swindle, especially one involving a fraudulent increase of the price of a share.

    ‘the Stock Exchange is investigating two blatant share ramps’
    fraud, swindle, fraudulent scheme, confidence trick, mare's nest
    View synonyms


  • 1[with object] Increase the level or amount of (something) sharply.

    ‘the company has moved into new quarters in order to ramp up production’
    [no object] ‘the level of violence is ramping up’
    • ‘Does this additional knowledge mean professionals have to ramp up their service levels?’
    • ‘‘We plan to begin ramping production, carefully controlling our burn rate going forward,’ says CEO Gary Jones.’
    • ‘This will also be ramped up to 1, 36,000 by 2005 fiscal-end, Chopra said.’
    • ‘When the plant is ramped up to full speed by the end of 2002, it will take in 45 tons of coconut fiber and 35 tons of natural latex per month and transform them into 80 tons of finished products.’
    • ‘In addition to ramping up prices every month, they're slow to process applications, and their insurance agents take days to return calls.’
    • ‘It took a world war to finally ramp federal spending up to the levels needed to pull the economy out of the ditch.’
    • ‘When production is fully ramped up the maximum daily capacity at the plant will reach 1,800 units a day, for an annual capacity of 405,000 units.’
    • ‘Production was radically ramped up, going from 15 a month in May 2003 to 450 a month today.’
    • ‘Here the pitiful handful of properties the council insisted on being ‘affordable’ are being subsidised by ramping up the prices on the rest of the houses.’
    • ‘At least this time it seems like the cost side of the business won't be ramped up in advance of the increase in demand, if it comes at all.’
    • ‘But I do wonder if the discussion of content needs be be ramped up to another level.’
    • ‘We had a case recently of a hotel in the north which ramped up its prices and put restrictions on when people could come and go and when the bar was open.’
    • ‘He said Chrysler's PT Cruiser and Volkswagen's Beetle are both examples of cars that saw heavy initial demand fall off after production was ramped up.’
    • ‘In earlier wars, the U.S. infrastructure was ramped up, not destroyed, but today significant parts of it are at risk.’
    • ‘On the other hand, the action is much more elaborate and the entertainment factor is ramped up a good bit.’
    • ‘Production was ramped up so that in future they could achieve this level of output.’
    • ‘So over the next few months, Intel will continue to ramp the clockspeed of its processors.’
    • ‘The centre will have a staff of 40 to 50 persons initially and later be ramped up depending on demand, he said.’
    • ‘They have routine duties but these are put on hold when exercises or operations are ramped up.’
    • ‘Electrolux says prices could come down as production is ramped up.’
    1. 1.1British Drive up the price of (a company's shares) in order to gain a financial advantage.
      ‘a rule against share price ramping which forbids a broker to account for more than 30 per cent of trading in a share’
      • ‘What's more, their wide spreads makes dealing in penny shares expensive, plus their prices are notoriously volatile and susceptible to ramping.’
      • ‘The web may be the future for our finances, but it's also prey for a new, illegal craze, share ramping.’
      • ‘Awarding chief executives shares and share options can encourage them to ramp the share price by acts of headline-catching bravado which rarely translate into value.’
      • ‘These are the same unforgiving analysts who talked up the technology boom in the hunt for corporate business, shamelessly ramping up the price of stock which many then cunningly sold near the top of the market.’
      • ‘If those accused of illegally ramping up the stock price of gaming company BW Resources in the Philippines are students of history, they are probably carefree these days.’
      • ‘Share ramping is an evil and insidious force within any economy.’
  • 2archaic [no object] (of an animal) rear up on its hind legs in a threatening posture.

    ‘they roared and ramped in cages’
    ‘a ramping lion’
    1. 2.1[with adverbial of direction]Rush about uncontrollably.
      ‘an awful beast ramping about the woods and fields’
    2. 2.2[with adverbial of direction](of a plant) grow or climb luxuriantly.
      ‘ivy ramped over the flower beds’
  • 3[no object] (of an electrical waveform) increase or decrease voltage linearly with time.

    ‘the integrated circuit's output then ramps in the negative direction’
    • ‘The gels were run for 20 hours using switch times of 5 to 45 seconds ramped in a linear fashion.’
    • ‘During a programming operation, the channel current is approximately zero, and the first voltage is ramped at a rate proportional to the injection current.’
  • 4[with object] Provide with a ramp.

    ‘ramped access to public buildings’
    • ‘Ilkley Lido, which has been known to attract up to 15,000 people in one week during hot summer weather, does have disabled changing cubicles with ramped access to the outdoor pool and café.’
    • ‘A great example locally of an attraction designed to accommodate a broad range of users is Underwater World Pattaya, with its ramped access, low level displays and counters, and accessible toilets.’
    • ‘The arc-shaped bridge - called Neptune's Way - will have a suspended ramped deck and will sweep across the river in an elliptical path.’
    • ‘It is our firm opinion, on grounds of public safety, a ramped footbridge should be provided at this location.’
    • ‘A raised terrace sits in the centre, with ramped access for sitting and for play.’
    • ‘Facilities for disabled passengers should also be improved with ramped access to platforms being installed at the very minimum.’


Middle English (as a verb in the sense ‘rear up’, also used as a heraldic term): from Old French ramper creep, crawl, of unknown origin. Sense 1 of the noun dates from the late 18th century.