\ ˈrōm How to pronounce roam (audio) \
roamed; roaming; roams

Definition of roam

intransitive verb

1 : to go from place to place without purpose or direction : wander
2 : to travel purposefully unhindered through a wide area cattle roaming in search of water
3 : to use a cellular phone outside one's local calling area roaming charges

transitive verb

: to range or wander over

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Other Words from roam

roam noun
roamer noun

Choose the Right Synonym for roam

wander, roam, ramble, rove, traipse, meander mean to go about from place to place usually without a plan or definite purpose. wander implies an absence of or an indifference to a fixed course. fond of wandering about the square just watching the people roam suggests wandering about freely and often far afield. liked to roam through the woods ramble stresses carelessness and indifference to one's course or objective. the speaker rambled on without ever coming to the point rove suggests vigorous and sometimes purposeful roaming. armed brigands roved over the countryside traipse implies a course that is erratic but may sometimes be purposeful. traipsed all over town looking for the right dress meander implies a winding or intricate course suggestive of aimless or listless wandering. the river meanders for miles through rich farmland

Examples of roam in a Sentence

The cattle roamed in search of water. Goats roam free on the mountain. He roamed about in search of work. The chickens are able to roam around freely in the farmyard. We roamed around town for a while before dinner. She liked to roam through the woods.
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Recent Examples on the Web Nara honors the tradition by allowing about 1,000 deer to roam freely — and tourists love them, sometimes feeding them inappropriate snacks. Los Angeles Times, "Where to hike in L.A.'s secret mountains," 12 Nov. 2020 More than 150 animals roam through the drive-through safari, including zebras, American bison, giraffes, eland antelopes and mouflon sheep, the attraction says. Dewayne Bevil,, "Wild Florida to sell annual passes for drive-through safari," 10 Nov. 2020 In Iceland, there are half a million sheep — nearly twice as many sheep as Icelanders — who roam freely throughout the summer, grazing. Jason Wilson, Washington Post, "During the pandemic, a lifelong travel writer takes a journey inward to reflect on what he has learned around the globe," 14 Oct. 2020 The news broke at 12:54 on Friday morning, a time when the well-adjusted are fast-asleep and the gremlins that keep Twitter fun and vibrant roam the internet alone. Michelle Santiago Cortés,, "Memes, TikToks & Tweets Reacting To Trump’s COVID Diagnosis," 2 Oct. 2020 But if that’s true, how about letting international journalists and others roam around Xinjiang, Tibet and the work camps to see for themselves? The Editorial Board, WSJ, "The Xinjiang Model Comes to Tibet," 22 Sep. 2020 Tempel Farms is in Old Mill Creek near Wadsworth and includes sprawling acres where hay is raised and horses can roam. Sheryl Devore,, "Tempel Lipizzan tours offer a peek behind the training curtain," 25 Aug. 2020 Italians were able to roam—albeit with caution and face masks—a little more freely. Lilah Ramzi, Vogue, "Carla Sersale on How a Quiet Summer at Le Sirenuse Gave Her Room to Grow," 9 Nov. 2020 Guests can roam the farm, visit the animals, and even purchase fresh eggs during their stay. Stacey Leasca, Travel + Leisure, "The 10 Best Remote Airbnbs for an Escape From Reality, According to the Author of 'Leave the World Behind'," 2 Nov. 2020

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'roam.' 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 roam

14th century, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense 1

History and Etymology for roam

Middle English romen

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Time Traveler for roam

Time Traveler

The first known use of roam was in the 14th century

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Statistics for roam

Last Updated

24 Nov 2020

Cite this Entry

“Roam.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 3 Dec. 2020.

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More Definitions for roam


How to pronounce roam (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of roam

: to go to different places without having a particular purpose or plan


\ ˈrōm How to pronounce roam (audio) \
roamed; roaming

Kids Definition of roam

: to go from place to place with no fixed purpose or direction

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