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[roi-ster] /ˈrɔɪ stər/
verb (used without object)
to act in a swaggering, boisterous, or uproarious manner.
to revel noisily or without restraint.
Origin of roister
1545-55; v. use of roister (noun) < Middle French ru(i)stre ruffian, boor, variant of ru(i)ste rustic
Related forms
roisterer, noun
roisterous, adjective
roisterously, adverb Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for roisterers
Historical Examples
  • Wherever there was a knot of midnight roisterers, they quaffed her health.

  • Flasks and kegs were empty, and most of the roisterers were sleeping.

    South from Hudson Bay E. C. [Ethel Claire] Brill
  • You have used your power to degrade the name of a king with roisterers and courtesans.

    Such is Life Frank Wedekind
  • The roisterers gazed at the paper, or began their preparations for departure.

    Double Trouble

    Herbert Quick
  • The roisterers went their devious ways, sobered and subdued.

    The Grey Cloak

    Harold MacGrath
  • Except the roisterers in the tavern, the village folk were abed.

    Roads of Destiny

    O. Henry
  • The hotel was entirely empty, the roisterers at the Prairie Home having drawn off the idlers and spectators.

    Northern Lights Gilbert Parker
  • The street was deserted save for a party of roisterers, who passed them, singing at the top of their voices.

  • Quebec did not mean to admit these roisterers within her precincts, which were none too well guarded.

    A Little Girl in Old Quebec Amanda Millie Douglas
  • He had stopped at inns in strange company of fools and knaves, pedlars, roisterers and swashbucklers.

    Platform Monologues T. G. Tucker
British Dictionary definitions for roisterers


verb (intransitive)
to engage in noisy merrymaking; revel
to brag, bluster, or swagger
Derived Forms
roisterer, noun
roisterous, adjective
roisterously, adverb
Word Origin
C16: from Old French rustre lout, from ruste uncouth, from Latin rusticus rural; see rustic
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for roisterers



"bluster, swagger, be bold, noisy, vaunting, or turbulent," 1580s, from an obsolete noun roister "noisy bully" (1550s, displaced by 19c. by roisterer), from Middle French ruistre "ruffian," from Old French ruiste "boorish, gross, uncouth," from Latin rusticus (see rustic (adj.)). Related: Roistered; roistering. Ralph Royster-Doyster is the title and lead character of what is sometimes called the first English comedy (Udall, 1555).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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