random

noun
ran·​dom | \ ˈran-dəm How to pronounce random (audio) \

Definition of random

 (Entry 1 of 3)

: a haphazard course
at random
: without definite aim, direction, rule, or method subjects chosen at random

random

adjective

Definition of random (Entry 2 of 3)

1a : lacking a definite plan, purpose, or pattern
b : made, done, or chosen at random read random passages from the book
2a : relating to, having, or being elements or events with definite probability of occurrence random processes
b : being or relating to a set or to an element of a set each of whose elements has equal probability of occurrence a random sample also : characterized by procedures designed to obtain such sets or elements random sampling

random

adverb

Definition of random (Entry 3 of 3)

: in a random manner

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Other Words from random

Adjective

randomly adverb

Choose the Right Synonym for random

Adjective

random, haphazard, casual mean determined by accident rather than design. random stresses lack of definite aim, fixed goal, or regular procedure. a random selection of books haphazard applies to what is done without regard for regularity or fitness or ultimate consequence. a haphazard collection of rocks casual suggests working or acting without deliberation, intention, or purpose. a casual collector

Examples of random in a Sentence

Adjective a random sequence of letters A random sample of doctors from around the country were selected for the study. We tasted the wines in random order and then rated each. a random collection of buttons She collects random photographs that she finds in antique shops. Pick a random word on the page. The computer program generates a list of random numbers.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Each kentuki has two users: the keeper, who owns the toy, and the dweller, a volunteer assigned at random who controls it remotely, via software interface, from elsewhere in the world. J. Robert Lennon, New York Times, 5 May 2020 The village of Blackhall Colliery in County Durham became a global spectacle when large sums of money began appearing at random near the main street in 2014. Fox News, 15 Jan. 2020 Tilleson said the city and police expects to conduct up to four random directed patrol missions in East Tosa in the coming year. Karen Pilarski, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, 22 Nov. 2019 Oregon State is also launching a four-week effort to collect samples at random from nearly 1,000 residents in Corvallis. oregonlive, 18 Apr. 2020 This is typically slow because the electron has to hop from site to site in a kind of random, drift-like fashion. Chris Lee, Ars Technica, 13 Mar. 2020 What her doctor said next surprised her: Amanda had likely entered perimenopause, the five to 10 years leading up to menopause when hormones start to go haywire, spiking and dipping seemingly at random. Meryl Davids Landau, Woman's Day, 27 Jan. 2020 Even worse, the buggers appear at random from a draw bag as your exploration of the ship makes more of a ruckus. Dan Thurot, Ars Technica, 18 Jan. 2020 The conceit was this: You’d be paired with a conversational partner at random for a video chat via webcam. Arielle Pardes, Wired, 24 Dec. 2019 Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective As a safeguard against errors, Levy and his deputy were required each month to review a random sample of 10% of each other’s cases, a routine practice among pathologists. Author: Lisa Rein, Anchorage Daily News, 2 June 2021 That means that the researchers could predict with 88 percent accuracy which city a random sample came from. Theresa Machemer, Smithsonian Magazine, 28 May 2021 The survey was conducted by the American Enterprise Institute's Survey Center on American Life between January 21-30 among a random sample of 2,016 adults living in the 50 states and the District of Columbia. John General And Richa Naik, CNN, 23 May 2021 This poll was conducted by telephone May 11-16, 2021 among a random sample of 1,008 adults nationwide. Fred Backus, CBS News, 22 May 2021 While every startup that raised VC and reached a billion-dollar valuation was eligible for inclusion in the unicorn data set, Tamaseb added a baseline of several hundred startups that didn’t reach that milestone as a random sample comparison point. Alex Konrad, Forbes, 21 May 2021 However, only the results from the random sample will be included in the report presented to the council. Gloria Casas, chicagotribune.com, 7 May 2021 The clerk then sent a random sample to the Maricopa County Elections Department for verification last week, according the city. Alison Steinbach, The Arizona Republic, 5 May 2021 The American Association of Critical-Care Nurses, which collaborated with OSU on the study, sent an email to a random sample of about 2,500 members in 2019 asking for volunteers to participate in the survey. Julie Washington, cleveland, 1 May 2021 Recent Examples on the Web: Adverb There’s one really random one called Mindicine that a postpartum therapist recommended. Collier Meyerson, WIRED, 16 Aug. 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'random.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of random

Noun

1561, in the meaning defined above

Adjective

1619, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

Adverb

1618, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for random

Noun

Middle English, succession, surge, from Anglo-French randun, from Old French randir to run, of Germanic origin; akin to Old High German rinnan to run — more at run

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Cite this Entry

“Random.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/random. Accessed 19 Jun. 2021.

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More Definitions for random

random

adjective

English Language Learners Definition of random

: chosen, done, etc., without a particular plan or pattern

random

adjective
ran·​dom | \ ˈran-dəm How to pronounce random (audio) \

Kids Definition of random

: lacking a clear plan, purpose, or pattern I read a random selection of poems.

Other Words from random

randomly adverb
randomness noun

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