\ ˈrōg How to pronounce rogue (audio) \

Essential Meaning of rogue

1 old-fashioned : a man who is dishonest or immoral a lying rogue [=scoundrel]
2 : a man who causes trouble in a playful way He's a lovable old rogue.

Full Definition of rogue

 (Entry 1 of 4)

1 : vagrant, tramp
2 : a dishonest or worthless person : scoundrel
3 : a mischievous person : scamp
4 : a horse inclined to shirk or misbehave
5 : an individual exhibiting a chance and usually inferior biological variation


rogued; roguing or rogueing

Definition of rogue (Entry 2 of 4)

intransitive verb

: to weed out inferior, diseased, or nontypical individuals from a crop plant or a field



Definition of rogue (Entry 3 of 4)

1 : resembling or suggesting a rogue elephant especially in being isolated, aberrant, dangerous, or uncontrollable capsized by a rogue wave
2 : corrupt, dishonest rogue cops
3 : of or being a nation whose leaders defy international law or norms of international behavior rogue states
go rogue
: to begin to behave in an independent or uncontrolled way that is not authorized, normal, or expected Before the Clemson Tigers played Notre Dame in Arlington, Texas on Saturday, Clark [a bald eagle] was supposed to fly around the stadium, high above people's heads. But instead, he went rogue and decided to perch on two unsuspecting fans.— Nicole Gallucci Anders had been sent to the Amazon to monitor the program's progress under the formidable Dr. Annick Swensen (who may have gone rogue and is no longer returning the company's calls).— Yvonne Zipp Whenever a member of a group goes rogue, you can be absolutely certain that other members of that group will pop up with the "bad apple" defense, as in, "Well, sure, there's a few bad apples in every bunch, but that's the exception."— Christine Flowers


geographical name
\ ˈrōg How to pronounce Rogue (audio) \

Definition of Rogue (Entry 4 of 4)

river about 200 miles (320 kilometers) long in southwestern Oregon rising in Crater Lake National Park and flowing west and southwest into the Pacific Ocean

Other Words from rogue


roguish \ ˈrō-​gish How to pronounce Rogue (audio) \ adjective
roguishly adverb
roguishness noun

Examples of rogue in a Sentence

Noun Many of the vagabonds were rogues and cheaters of various kinds, and formed a subcommunity on the fringes of official society. — Charles Barber, Early Modern English, 1976 Cartier decided that the two boys were a choice pair of rogues who would probably try to run him aground if taken as pilots, and that he would dispense with their services. — Samuel Eliot Morison, The European Discovery of America, 1971 His account of their discoveries in the low life of a seaport town would have made a charming book, and in the various characters that came their way the student might easily have found matter for a very complete dictionary of rogues. — W. Somerset Maugham, Moon and Sixpence, 1919 He's a lovable old rogue. a rogue who had nothing but contempt for people who made their living honestly Adjective Americans assume that our country was built by rogue males but there's more to the breed than wanderlust and rugged individualism. — Florence King, National Review, 27 Aug. 2007 Perhaps more important, defense planners worried for the past year about the instability of the Soviet Union and the nightmare that a rogue Soviet submarine skipper might decide on his own to launch close to 200 warheads at U.S. targets. — John Barry, Newsweek, 3 June 1991 In "The In-Laws," Alan Arkin is a dentist led astray by a rogue C.I.A. operative …, whose son his daughter is marrying, and he winds up dodging bullets on a Caribbean island. — Terrence Rafferty, New Yorker, 30 July 1990 a rogue administrator who took bribes to falsify paperwork
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun There’s a reason no one respects Iron Man’s rogue’s gallery, and the Melter is emblematic of the hero’s lackluster villains. Oliver Sava, Vulture, 21 May 2021 Local artist Shinpei Takeda went rogue for this immersive, otherworldly exhibition at CECUT, which opened in June. Seth Combs, San Diego Union-Tribune, 26 Dec. 2021 After losing eight straight games to L.A., the Cardinals might have gone rogue like the Dodgers once did at Chase Field and joyfully, ahem, relieve themselves. Bob Mcmanaman, The Arizona Republic, 4 Oct. 2021 The Good Place’s Kristen Bell and Kirby Howell-Baptiste star as two extreme couponers gone rogue in Queenpins. Zoe Haylock, Vulture, 8 July 2021 The show at its core is still pretty enjoyable for a dark fantasy, and the reappearance of rock-star tunesmith Jaskier (Joey Batey), plus new characters like the flame-conjuring rogue mage Rience (Chris Fulton), help in that regard. Brian Truitt, USA TODAY, 18 Dec. 2021 Despite the rogue clamp, the telescope was still very much intact. Marina Koren, The Atlantic, 1 Dec. 2021 Greater traceability and transparency eliminate waste, duplicate orders and accounts payable headaches such as invoice fraud and rogue spend. Michael Higgins, Forbes, 8 Nov. 2021 What if a Tesla being driven on Autopilot goes rogue? Susannah Bryan,, 31 Oct. 2021 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb Zero-Trust protects against both account compromises and rogue internal accounts. Expert Panel®, Forbes, 24 June 2021 Trump is not a pharmaceutical manufacturer that can go rogue and produce a vaccine. Michael Brendan Dougherty, National Review, 16 Sep. 2020 But a conservative Court of Appeals panel could rogue and decide to disobey Roe and Casey. Dylan Matthews, Vox, 11 July 2018 Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective This means that Windows 11 ducks past some big security holes that were inherent and unfixable in older processors and allows Microsoft to tighten the grip on rogue software that installs without your knowledge. Barry Collins, Forbes, 2 Oct. 2021 Everyone needs to understand that rogue nations and terrorist organizations fund their operations with the gains that come from cybercrime. Emil Sayegh, Forbes, 28 June 2021 Nations that refused to recognize the authority of the U.S. Patent Office were rogue nations, pirate states, whose intellectual larceny threatened both factory jobs in Detroit and rising high-tech industries in Silicon Valley. Alexander Zaitchik, The New Republic, 1 June 2021 On the other side are the rogue nations of Russia and China. Andrew Stuttaford, National Review, 8 May 2021 But then, in 2012, director Bill Condon went totally rogue. Rebecca Alter, Vulture, 25 Oct. 2021 The plainclothes unit went completely rogue and began hunting and robbing citizens and drug dealers alike as decades of a relentless drug war and mass incarceration in Baltimore spun wildly out of control. Joe Otterson, Variety, 29 Sep. 2021 But rogue gunfire spilling over into its prized City Park—and a baby bloodied in an apparent shootout—rattled Denver’s core. Lynnell Hancock, The New Republic, 23 Nov. 2021 Things look bad — until someone decides to try a rogue geoengineering scheme. Washington Post, 23 Nov. 2021

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


1561, in the meaning defined at sense 1


1766, in the meaning defined above


1835, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for rogue


of obscure origin


derivative of rogue entry 1


derivative of rogue entry 1

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Last Updated

19 Jan 2022

Cite this Entry

“Rogue.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 29 Jan. 2022.

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More Definitions for rogue


\ ˈrōg How to pronounce rogue (audio) \

Kids Definition of rogue

1 : a dishonest or evil person
2 : a pleasantly mischievous person

More from Merriam-Webster on rogue

Nglish: Translation of rogue for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of rogue for Arabic Speakers


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