rou·​lette | \ rü-ˈlet How to pronounce roulette (audio) \

Definition of roulette

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1a : a gambling game in which players bet on which compartment of a revolving wheel a small ball will come to rest in
b : something involving a high degree of chance and unpredictability
2a : any of various toothed wheels or disks (as for producing rows of dots on engraved plates or for making short consecutive incisions in paper to facilitate subsequent division)
b : tiny slits between rows of stamps in a sheet that are made by a roulette and serve as an aid in separation — compare perforation


rouletted; rouletting

Definition of roulette (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

: to make roulettes in

Examples of roulette in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Swimmers here, the film informs us, are playing roulette with some of the biggest jaws on the planet. Dorothy Rabinowitz, WSJ, "‘Outback: The Kimberley Comes Alive’ Review: Awesome Australia," 26 July 2018 Roster roulette: The Bulls made official what has been reported for weeks, waiving Sean Kilpatrick. K.c. Johnson,, "Fellow Duke big man Harry Giles praises Bulls' Wendell Carter Jr.," 12 July 2018 Roster roulette: The Columbus Blue Jackets recalled forward Zac Dalpe, goaltender Joonas Korpisalo and defenseman Dean Kukan from the Monsters on Sunday morning and returned Kivlenieks. Plain Dealer Sports,, "Iowa Wild tame Cleveland Monsters, 4-1," 8 Jan. 2018 There were no injuries in either case. • On Aug. 18, 1913, a roulette wheel in Monte Carlo came up black 26 times in a row. John Steele Gordon, WSJ, "Things That Make You Go Hmmmm," 30 Aug. 2018 If gambling is no dice, the hotel’s exclusive pool offers an escape from the roulette and blackjack tables. Samantha Swenson, ELLE Decor, "There's a Newcomer to The Strip: the NoMad Las Vegas," 12 Oct. 2018 There’s even a roulette lounge at the Helsinki Airport. Rick Steves' Europe, The Seattle Times, "Helsinki holds its own among Nordic capitals," 18 Sep. 2018 Photo: joey roulette/Reuters The shooting occurred as the tournament was being live-streamed on social media. Zusha Elinson, WSJ, "Madden Videogame Competition in Jacksonville, Fla., Erupts in Gunfire," 26 Aug. 2018 To have Class III gaming such as slot machines and roulette would require forming a compact with the state to share revenue. Washington Post, "Long opposed to casinos, Virginia may be ready to gamble," 5 May 2018

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


1744, in the meaning defined at sense 1a


1867, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for roulette


French, literally, small wheel, from Old French roelete, diminutive of roele wheel, rowel, from Late Latin rotella, diminutive of Latin rota wheel — more at roll

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Statistics for roulette

Last Updated

1 Feb 2019

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Time Traveler for roulette

The first known use of roulette was in 1744

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English Language Learners Definition of roulette

: a game in which a small ball is dropped onto a numbered wheel that is spinning and players bet on which numbered section the ball will rest in

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More from Merriam-Webster on roulette

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with roulette

Spanish Central: Translation of roulette

Nglish: Translation of roulette for Spanish Speakers Encyclopedia article about roulette

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What made you want to look up roulette? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


a shady place in a garden or forest

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