ro·tun·da | \rō-ˈtən-də \

Definition of rotunda 

1 : a round building especially : one covered by a dome

2a : a large round room

b : a large central area (as in a hotel)

Examples of rotunda in a Sentence

We stood inside the rotunda of the U.S. Capitol Building.

Recent Examples on the Web

Before a rotunda of viewers assembled for his one-night event, the performers — an ethnically diverse mix of men and women around the ages of 18 to 70 — bore no sign of their group affiliation. Meredith Mendelsohn, New York Times, "Can an Artist Shift the Gun Debate?," 22 June 2018 The grand foyer offers a view of the triple-tiered rotunda ceiling and curved stairway. Houston Chronicle, "Westin Homes raises record funds from Benefit Homes project," 10 June 2018 Lawmakers and their staffs from both sides of the aisle filled the rotunda of the U.S. Capitol Wednesday morning to pay their respects to the late Rev. Billy Graham, widely viewed as the most influential pastor in American politics. Eugene Scott, Washington Post, "Trump prays for God to ‘raise up’ another Billy Graham following the evangelical leader’s death," 28 Feb. 2018 Thirteen protesters demanding removal of the Christopher Columbus statue from the rotunda at California's Capitol were arrested Monday, authorities say. Cassie Dickman, sacbee, "Protesters of Christopher Columbus 'genocide' climb statue, get arrested at California Capitol," 5 June 2018 Portraits of Lurleen Wallace and her husband, four-time Alabama governor George Wallace, were moved in 2015 from the rotunda to the hall leading to the Secretary of State's Office. Ivana Hrynkiw,, "One dead in Lipscomb house fire Wednesday morning," 2 May 2018 Outside, a figure of young Abe poses on a rock, eyes gazing across the museum rotunda toward a model of his future home, the White House. Katherine Rodeghier,, "Looking for Lincoln on a grown-up getaway to Springfield," 1 May 2018 The United Daughters of the Confederacy urged the creation of a Davis statue in the capitol rotunda in Frankfort, Kentucky in 1934, according to the historic properties commission. Thomas Novelly, The Courier-Journal, "Why is today Confederate Memorial Day in Kentucky?," 3 June 2018 Dressed in matching green T-shirts, scores of employees with the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees packed into the Capitol rotunda, chanting and waving protest signs. Chicago Tribune,, "Morning Spin: Emanuel doesn't rule out another property tax hike if re-elected," 27 Apr. 2018

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

circa 1566, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for rotunda

Italian rotonda, from Latin rotunda, feminine of rotundus

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Last Updated

12 Oct 2018

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Time Traveler for rotunda

The first known use of rotunda was circa 1566

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English Language Learners Definition of rotunda

: a large, round room and especially one covered by a dome


Medical Definition of rotunda 

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