rov·​ing | \ ˈrō-viŋ \

Definition of roving

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1a : not restricted as to location or area of concern
b : capable of being shifted from place to place : mobile
2 : inclined to ramble or stray a roving fancy



Definition of roving (Entry 2 of 2)

: a slightly twisted roll or strand of usually textile fibers

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Examples of roving in a Sentence


a roving substitute teacher who works in a different district every day

Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective

The breadth of the collection offers a window into the roving mind of its proprietor, Karl Lagerfeld, who sits at the head of a table in an immaculate Dior Homme suit. Erik Maza, Town & Country, "Karl Lagerfeld Turns Interior Designer With a New Miami Masterpiece," 3 Jan. 2019 The drinks are simple (get a straight shot) and there's no food save for toasted peanuts and fava beans sold from a roving snack vendor. Scarlett Lindeman, Condé Nast Traveler, "20 Best Bars in Mexico City," 27 Feb. 2018 The letters are soon undergoing a restoration and will soon be traveling around the city as a roving installation at festivals and events. Liz Stinson, Curbed, "Tourist magnet ‘I Amsterdam’ sign has been removed," 6 Dec. 2018 The Draper is the second offering from Land Ark RV, the company now making some of the most stylish roving houses out there. Liz Stinson, Curbed, "Ultra-stylish tiny house comes with fold-down deck," 9 Nov. 2018 The host of MasterChef Italia for its first six seasons, Cracco has the firebrand personality (and good looks) of a TV sensation, the refined taste of a chef with a Michelin star, and the roving curiosity of a world traveler. Town & Country, "The Secret Worlds of Milan’s Design Illuminati," 21 Sep. 2018 Plaza Garibaldi Mexico's roving mariachi bands have been found in this plaza, a few blocks north of the Palacio de Bellas Artes, since the mid-1900s. Condé Nast Traveler, "23 Best Things To Do In Mexico City," 4 Mar. 2018 Mostly, though, there is the 1963 Rolls-Royce Phantom V, which came into Mr. Jarecki’s sights a few years back and serves as both the documentary’s roving stage and silent co-star. Eugene Jarecki, New York Times, "Review: ‘The King’ Chases the American Dream and Elvis," 21 June 2018 Both accompany him to the ultimate black site: a sub retrofitted to be a roving, escape-proof venue for Abu Ghraib-style interrogation. John Defore, The Hollywood Reporter, "'Black Water': Film Review," 23 May 2018

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


1565, in the meaning defined at sense 1a


1785, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for roving


rove entry 1


rove entry 4

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Learn More about roving

Statistics for roving

Last Updated

14 Jan 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for roving

The first known use of roving was in 1565

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More Definitions for roving



English Language Learners Definition of roving

: going to many different places

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More from Merriam-Webster on roving

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for roving

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

Comments on roving

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esteemed in general opinion

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