ro·​ta | \ ˈrō-tə How to pronounce rota (audio) \

Definition of rota

 (Entry 1 of 3)

1 capitalized [Medieval Latin, from Latin] : a tribunal of the papal curia exercising jurisdiction especially in matrimonial cases appealed from diocesan courts
2 chiefly British
a : a fixed order of rotation (as of persons or duties)
b : a roll or list of persons : roster


biographical name
Ro·​ta | \ ˈrō-(ˌ)tä How to pronounce Rota (audio) \

Definition of Rota (Entry 2 of 3)

Nino 1911–1979 Italian composer


geographical name
Ro·​ta | \ ˈrō-tə How to pronounce Rota (audio) \

Definition of Rota (Entry 3 of 3)

1 island in the western Pacific Ocean at the southern end of the Mariana Islands area 35 square miles (91 square kilometers)
2 town and port on the Atlantic Ocean in southwestern Spain population 29,136

Examples of rota in a Sentence

Noun a rota of housekeeping duties
Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Native Americans, for example, have different names for the year’s rota of full moons, a technique partly designed to track the passage of time. Robin Andrews, Forbes, 26 May 2021 Turnberry, on Scotland's Ayrshire coast, is one of the finest venues on the Open Championship rota and has produced some of the most memorable finishes of the last 40-odd years. Eamon Lynch, Detroit Free Press, 10 Jan. 2021 But the covid-19 world is one where hairdressers sterilise their scissors between cuts and offices allocate desks on a rota to maintain social distancing. The Economist, 20 June 2020 When childcare and school were canceled for her kids, ages three and six, Alice and her partner worked out a rota where each tried to fulfill their full-time work responsibilities, and took shifts of childcare. Cassie Werber, Quartz at Work, 21 May 2020 Companies would be expected to shift their rotas so that offices are never full unnecessarily. Rob Picheta, CNN, 3 May 2020 Erol Koc runs a very small corner shop, Roj Supermarket, also in Waltham Forest, that employs four people on a rota to staff the single till. Cassie Werber, Quartz, 17 Mar. 2020 Applying a weekly cleaning rota, along with assigning breakfast duties, all five could bunk up a la university halls and bond every night., 29 Sep. 2019 In other workplaces some seats will be tacitly reserved for those with seniority; who would dare sit in the seat of the person who decides your work rota? The Economist, 26 Sep. 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'rota.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

See More

First Known Use of rota


1561, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for rota


Latin, wheel — more at roll

Learn More About rota

Dictionary Entries Near rota




See More Nearby Entries 

Statistics for rota

Cite this Entry

“Rota.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 24 Jan. 2022.

Style: MLA
MLACheck Mark Icon ChicagoCheck Mark Icon APACheck Mark Icon Merriam-WebsterCheck Mark Icon

More Definitions for rota



English Language Learners Definition of rota

: a list that shows who must do a certain job

More from Merriam-Webster on rota Encyclopedia article about rota


Test Your Vocabulary

Farm Idioms Quiz

  • cow coming home
  • What does 'poke' refer to in the expression 'pig in a poke'?
True or False

Test your knowledge - and maybe learn something along the way.

Universal Daily Crossword

A daily challenge for crossword fanatics.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!