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

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 Outstanding in the Field, a roving restaurant-without-walls, brings guests straight to the source, presenting seasonal, site-specific meals in the farms, gardens and groves where the food was raised and harvested. Agatha French,, "This chef has put on pop-up dinners in 15 countries and all 50 states," 24 Apr. 2018 Your job as a child is to be roving eyes and roving hands. Aaron Gilbreath, Longreads, "The Inward Empire," 27 June 2018 Pablito’s Kitchen Pablito’s Kitchen, operated by Danny Rodriguez and chef Charles Thomson, started off as a roving truck before settling down into a brick and mortar in Burbank two years ago. Garrett Snyder, Los Angeles Magazine, "The Best Peruvian Restaurants in Los Angeles," 26 June 2018 Hazard was in attendance at Thursday's NBA London clash between Boston Celtics and the Philadelphia 76ers - a contest Boston won 114-103 - and Hazard was nabbed by a roving reporter despite trying to remain inconspicuous., "Eden Hazard Claims He, Thibaut Courtois Will Sign New Chelsea Contracts," 12 Jan. 2018 Google has been trying to control its losses, using roving teams to collect the bikes from around town, and recently installing GPS trackers. David Z. Morris, Fortune, "Google Is Struggling With Friendly Neighborhood Bike Thieves," 6 Jan. 2018 There are three ramp agents per flight, with one roving ramp agent to help during busy times. Joe Taschler, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Out on 'the ramp,' minutes count. It's some of the toughest — and most fun — work in the airline business," 14 June 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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Statistics for roving

Last Updated

4 Nov 2018

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

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


playful or foolish behavior

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