\ 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 Ambulances roam the city, operated by emergency workers dressed in hazardous materials suits. Ivan Watson, Sandi Sidhu And Brad Olson, CNN, "The Wuhan virus has turned China's gambling mecca of Macao into a ghost town," 3 Feb. 2020 Available day or night, Father Bruno, as he was called, roamed the county with his own police radio and callsign. Cameron Knight,, "The first and last chaplain: Remembering Father Bruno Kremp," 31 Jan. 2020 Shanahan roamed the practice field, did laundry, ran errands. Ron Kroichick,, "Is 49ers’ Kyle Shanahan the coolest coach ever?," 30 Jan. 2020 Neanderthals roamed the lands across Europe and the Middle East. National Geographic, "You may have more Neanderthal DNA than you think," 30 Jan. 2020 Error 0: The Heat tried creative ways to flummox Boston’s offense, extensively using a kind of 1-3-1 matchup zone in which its longer, athletic players roamed the perimeter. Adam Himmelsbach,, "The playoffs are a long way off, but every win over Miami is key for the Celtics," 29 Jan. 2020 Will Liverpool trucks still roam the streets after the new law goes into effect? Anne Kadet, WSJ, "NYC Trash Hauler Makes Big Bet to Keep on Trucking," 28 Jan. 2020 The youngest child, Riley, is roaming around in a Grateful Dead T-shirt, playing with a music box. Tessa Love, Outside Online, "Greg Glassman’s Easy Health Care Fix: More CrossFit," 16 Jan. 2020 Julian Castro roamed the Spin Room after Thursday night’s debate like Banquo’s Ghost. Walter Shapiro, The New Republic, "The Perils of Going Negative," 15 Jan. 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

6 Feb 2020

Cite this Entry

“Roam.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 19 Feb. 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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More from Merriam-Webster on roam

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for roam

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with roam

Spanish Central: Translation of roam

Nglish: Translation of roam for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of roam for Arabic Speakers

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