\ ˈrȯi(-ə)l How to pronounce roil (audio) , transitive sense 2 is also ˈrī(-ə)l\
roiled; roiling; roils

Definition of roil

transitive verb

1a : to make turbid by stirring up the sediment or dregs of
b : to stir up : disturb, disorder

intransitive verb

: to move turbulently : be in a state of turbulence or agitation conflicting emotions roiling inside her

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Synonyms for roil


boil, churn, moil, seethe

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Examples of roil in a Sentence

Financial markets have been roiled by the banking crisis. the waters of the gulf tossed and roiled as the hurricane surged toward the shore

Recent Examples on the Web

Financial markets have been roiled this summer as the trade war escalated., "Stocks notch solid gains as China eases trade tensions a bit - The Boston Globe," 12 Sep. 2019 Results of the elections, held on Sunday, highlighted the Kremlin’s troubles in the Russian capital, which has been roiled in recent weeks by a wave of protests, while demonstrating its firm grip on politics elsewhere in the vast country. Ivan Nechepurenko, New York Times, "Putin’s Political Party Suffers Losses in Moscow Election," 9 Sep. 2019 Hong Kong has been roiled by weeks of protests by demonstrators demanding greater democracy in the semi-autonomous city that had been under British rule until it was handed over to the People's Republic of China in 1997. NBC News, "Hong Kong protest suddenly turns chaotic," 21 Aug. 2019 State lawmakers on Tuesday opened an investigation into the finances and operations of the troubled Connecticut Port Authority that was roiled this summer by two high-level resignations over financial improprieties. Stephen Singer,, "State lawmakers open probe of troubled Connecticut Port Authority, focusing on reports of mismanagement of finances and operations," 20 Aug. 2019 The state has been roiled by a budget dilemma linked to its uneasy reliance on oil, bringing a reckoning that has scrambled traditional political alliances. Becky Bohrer, Anchorage Daily News, "Alaska’s oil money headaches: ‘We did this to ourselves’," 9 Aug. 2019 Hong Kong has been roiled by protests against the policies set in Beijing. Nicholas Frankovich, National Review, "The Unmade Case against China," 16 July 2019 Last week, the Supreme Court was roiled by an unusually pointed disagreement about stare decisis. George Will, Twin Cities, "George Will: Let flawed court precedent fall," 28 June 2019 Hong Kong has been roiled this month by the government’s effort to steamroll opposition to the contentious law. Natasha Khan, WSJ, "Hong Kong Protesters Gather Outside Government’s Central Offices," 20 June 2019

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

1590, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1a

History and Etymology for roil

origin unknown

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Dictionary Entries near roil



roi fainéant





Statistics for roil

Last Updated

19 Oct 2019

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Time Traveler for roil

The first known use of roil was in 1590

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More Definitions for roil



English Language Learners Definition of roil

chiefly US
: to upset (someone or something) very much : to cause (someone or something) to become very agitated or disturbed
: to move in a violent and confused way

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More from Merriam-Webster on roil

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with roil

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for roil

Nglish: Translation of roil for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of roil for Arabic Speakers

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