1 of 2

noun (1)

ro·​ver ˈrō-vər How to pronounce rover (audio)
: pirate


2 of 2

noun (2)

rov·​er ˈrō-vər How to pronounce rover (audio)
: a random or long-distance mark in archery
usually used in plural
: a player who is not assigned to a specific position on a team and who plays wherever needed
: a vehicle for exploring the surface of an extraterrestrial body (such as the moon or Mars)

Examples of rover in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web
The rover is already at work and confirmed the presence of sulfur on the lunar surface Monday, according to India’s Space Research Organization. Sammy Westfall, Washington Post, 31 Aug. 2023 The other, Peregrine Mission 1 from Pittsburgh’s Astrobotic Technology, carries a tiny rover called Iris. IEEE Spectrum, 29 Aug. 2023 The lander and rover will use a range of instruments to make thermal, seismic and mineralogical measurements. Kenneth Chang, New York Times, 23 Aug. 2023 Jordan has been the primary first-team rover during preseason camp, though South Alabama has begun to experiment with combinations where Gallmon and Voisin are on the field together. Creg Stephenson |, al, 14 Aug. 2023 That began with a lunar orbiter in 2007 and was followed by other orbiters, a lander, and then a rover in 2019. Ramin Skibba, WIRED, 18 Aug. 2023 Yam Banks is a lock to hold down the Husky (nickel spot) and Jalen Jordan has been the first player on the field at rover for nearly every team drill in the preseason. Creg Stephenson |, al, 14 Aug. 2023 Next year, a NASA rover called VIPER and a separate hopping spacecraft called Micro-Nova from the US firm Intuitive Machines will also look for ice inside lunar craters at the south pole. Jonathan O'Callaghan, Scientific American, 11 Aug. 2023 Technicians carefully lower the MOXIE instrument into the Perseverance rover. Conor Feehly, Discover Magazine, 9 Aug. 2023 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'rover.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History


Noun (1)

Middle English, from Middle Dutch, from roven to rob; akin to Old English rēafian to reave — more at reave

First Known Use

Noun (1)

14th century, in the meaning defined above

Noun (2)

circa 1525, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of rover was in the 14th century

Dictionary Entries Near rover

Cite this Entry

“Rover.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 29 Sep. 2023.

Kids Definition


1 of 2 noun
ro·​ver ˈrō-vər How to pronounce rover (audio)


2 of 2 noun
rov·​er ˈrō-vər How to pronounce rover (audio)
: a person who roves around : roamer

More from Merriam-Webster on rover

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