roll·​er-coast·​er | \ ˈrō-lər-ˌkō-stər How to pronounce roller-coaster (audio) , ˈrō-lə-ˌkō- \

Definition of roller-coaster

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: marked by numerous ups and downs an entertainer's roller-coaster career

roller coaster

roll·​er coast·​er | \ ˈrō-lər-ˌkō-stər How to pronounce roller coaster (audio) , ˈrō-lē-ˌkō- \

Definition of roller coaster (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : an elevated railway (as in an amusement park) constructed with sharp curves and steep inclines on which cars roll
2 : something resembling a roller coaster especially : behavior, events, or experiences characterized by sudden and extreme changes an emotional roller coaster

Examples of roller-coaster in a Sentence

Noun We went for a ride on the roller coaster. The divorce was an emotional roller coaster for both of them.
Recent Examples on the Web: Noun The first roller coaster at sea, Bolt, will debut aboard Carnival Cruise Line’s Mardi Gras in 2020. Arthur Levine, USA TODAY, "2020 theme park sneak peek: SeaWorld, Busch Gardens, Silver Dollar City show off new rides," 20 Nov. 2019 To date, SeaWorld has focused mostly on adding thrill rides such as roller coasters — including two new coasters at SeaWorld San Diego in the past few years — in hopes of mounting a comeback. San Diego Union-Tribune, "SeaWorld plans a new Sesame Place theme park in Chula Vista," 21 Oct. 2019 In December 2019, Carnival will debut its newest ship, Carnival Panorama, which will feature an indoor trampoline park, and in 2022, Mardis Gras will become the cruise line’s largest ship and will feature the first roller coaster at sea. Stefanie Waldek, Condé Nast Traveler, "The Best Cruise Lines in the World: 2019 Readers' Choice Awards," 7 Oct. 2019 Samuel Kempf, who was in Spain representing New Zealand in the Fistballing World Championship, decided to ride a roller coaster at Barcelona’s PortAventura theme park. Cady Lang, Time, "Hero Catches a Stranger's Phone Mid-Air While Riding a Roller Coaster," 5 Sep. 2019 Passengers had to be escorted off of a roller coaster at Six Flags America in Maryland on Thursday after the ride reportedly became stuck at the top of a hill. Fox News, "'Firebird' roller coaster jams at Six Flags park near DC; all passengers escorted to safety," 19 July 2019 There is a new roller coaster at Six Flags Great America. Rick Kogan,, "Remembering the Chicago amusement parks that filled summertime with thrills and spills and water," 10 July 2019 The July 4 fireworks view from this roller coaster at Great America in Santa Clara could be the wildest one around. Linda Zavoral, The Mercury News, "7 fun ways to watch Bay Area fireworks this Fourth of July," 29 June 2019 First an 80-ton hydrofoil sled will roll forward with the help of a cable and truck tires, producing the rickety sound made by a roller coaster at the beginning of its climb. Dan Fitzpatrick, WSJ, "What Happened When I Tried to Surf an Artificial Mega Wave," 16 May 2019

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


1940, in the meaning defined above


1883, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Time Traveler for roller-coaster

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The first known use of roller-coaster was in 1883

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Cite this Entry

“Roller-coaster.” The Dictionary, Merriam-Webster Inc., Accessed 18 January 2020.

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More Definitions for roller-coaster

roller coaster

How to pronounce roller coaster (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of roller coaster

: a ride at an amusement park which is like a small, open train with tracks that are high off the ground and that have sharp curves and steep hills
: a situation or experience that involves sudden and extreme changes

roller coaster


Kids Definition of roller coaster

: an amusement park ride that is an elevated railway with sharp curves and steep slopes over which cars travel

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Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with roller-coaster

Comments on roller-coaster

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experienced by way of someone else

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