Pronunciation: (rift), [key]
1. an opening made by splitting, cleaving, etc.; fissure; cleft; chink.
2. an open space, as in a forest or cloud mass, or a clear interval.
3. a break in friendly relations: a rift between two people; a rift between two nations.
4. a difference in opinion, belief, or interest that causes such a break in friendly relations.
a. a fault.
b. a graben of regional extent.
6. the plane or direction along which a log or mass of granite can most easily be split.
7. wood or a piece of wood that has been split radially from a log.
to burst open; split.
Random House Unabridged Dictionary, Copyright © 1997, by Random House, Inc., on Infoplease.