Ro·​ma·​ni | \ ˈrä-mə-nē How to pronounce Romani (audio) , ˈrō- \
variants: or Romany
plural Romani or Romannis or Romanies

Definition of Romani

1 : a member of a traditionally itinerant people who originated in northern India and now live chiefly in south and southwest Asia, Europe, and North America : rom entry 1, gypsy Racist violence against Romani in eastern Europe is reminiscent of pogroms against the Jews in the Tsarist Empire.— Donald Kenrick Headlines in Europe this month have highlighted the continent's worst, and most ill-managed social problem: the treatment of millions of Romanies who face at best discrimination and at worst persecution.The Economist
2 : the Indo-Aryan language of the Romani Today Romani exists in many dialects, reflecting the paths of Rom dispersion.— Carol Silverman Others believe the source [of cushy] is more likely to be a different Indic language, Romany, where the word is kushto, "good."— Jan Freeman

Other Words from Romani

Romani or Romany adjective
the Romani language the Romani people

First Known Use of Romani

1800, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for Romani

borrowed from Romani řomani, feminine of řomano "of the Rom," from řom "man, married man, male Rom" + -ano, adjective suffix (in reference to language by ellipsis from řomani čhib "Romani language") — more at rom entry 1

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More About Romani

Statistics for Romani

Cite this Entry

“Romani.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 23 Jul. 2021.

Style: MLA
MLACheck Mark Icon ChicagoCheck Mark Icon APACheck Mark Icon Merriam-WebsterCheck Mark Icon


Test Your Vocabulary

Farm Idioms Quiz

  • cow coming home
  • What does 'poke' refer to in the expression 'pig in a poke'?
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?


Anagram puzzles meet word search.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!