itin·​er·​ant ī-ˈti-nə-rənt How to pronounce itinerant (audio)
: traveling from place to place
especially : covering a circuit
itinerant preacher
itinerant noun
itinerantly adverb

Did you know?

In Latin, iter means "way" or "journey." That root was the parent of the Late Latin verb itinerari, meaning "to journey." It was that verb which ultimately gave rise to the English word for traveling types: itinerant. The linguistic grandparent, iter, also contributed to the development of other English words, including itinerary ("the route of a journey" and "the plan made for a journey") and errant ("traveling or given to traveling," as in knight-errant).

Examples of itinerant in a Sentence

an itinerant musician can see a lot of the world
Recent Examples on the Web The Nakasendo means 'the road through the mountains', and the Nakasendo Way explores one of Japan's ancient highways, used by feudal lords, samurai, itinerant merchants, and pilgrims. Everett Potter, Forbes, 20 Feb. 2024 Based on John Steinbeck’s novella about Depression-era itinerant farm workers, the company delivered a handsomely staged, beautifully sung production in October at the Bankhead Theater. Georgia Rowe, The Mercury News, 2 Jan. 2024 There’s an itinerant quality to Lucy Sante’s life and work. Josh Zajdman, Vogue, 14 Feb. 2024 In truth, Shakhtar has been an itinerant club since 2014 when it was forced out of its home in the Donbas region amid Russia’s forceful annexation of Crimea. Ben Church, CNN, 13 Feb. 2024 Commissioner Gary West made Monday’s motion to accept the new land use designation, relieving Josh’s of its itinerant status despite the business being a fixture in town since the 1990s. Joe Marusak, Charlotte Observer, 6 Feb. 2024 Dosunmu calls Brooklyn and Lagos his home bases, but his interaction with the world is itinerant. Doreen St. Félix, The New Yorker, 12 Dec. 2023 Despite a hardscrabble, itinerant youth, MacGowan earned a literature scholarship to the prestigious Westminster School at age 14, though he was expelled a year later for drug possession. Andrew Barker, Variety, 30 Nov. 2023 Back then, the problem was thought to be the nature of Joey himself, a greasy heel trying to scheme his way from itinerant crooner to supper club smoothie. Jesse Green, New York Times, 2 Nov. 2023 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'itinerant.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History


Late Latin itinerant-, itinerans, present participle of itinerari to journey, from Latin itiner-, iter journey, way; akin to Hittite itar way, Latin ire to go — more at issue entry 1

First Known Use

circa 1576, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of itinerant was circa 1576


Dictionary Entries Near itinerant

Cite this Entry

“Itinerant.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 4 Mar. 2024.

Kids Definition


itin·​er·​ant ī-ˈtin-ə-rənt How to pronounce itinerant (audio)
: traveling from place to place
an itinerant preacher

More from Merriam-Webster on itinerant

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