Longman Dictionary of Contemporary English homepage

Topic: CRIME AND LAW

Date: 1100-1200
Language: Old French
Origin: 'quarrel'

riot

1 noun
     
ri‧ot1 S3
1 [countable]SC a situation in which a large crowd of people are behaving in a violent and uncontrolled way, especially when they are protesting about something:
urban riots
prison riots
His murder triggered vicious race riots (=caused by a problem between different races).
police wearing riot gear (=the special clothing and equipment worn by police officers during a riot)
police in bullet-proof vests and carrying riot shields (=a piece of very hard plastic which police officers stand behind to protect them)
2

run riot

a) if your imagination, emotions, thoughts etc run riot, you cannot or do not control them:
Manufacturers have let their imaginations run riot to create new computer games.
b) if people run riot, they behave in a violent, noisy, and uncontrolled way:
Some people let their children run riot.
c) if a plant runs riot, it grows very quickly
3

a riot of colour

C something with many different bright colours:
The garden is a riot of colour in spring.
4

read (somebody) the riot act

to give someone a strong warning that they must stop causing trouble - used humorously:
If the kids don't settle down soon, I'll go up and read them the riot act.
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