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[uhn-rohl] /ʌnˈroʊl/
verb (used with object)
to open or spread out (something rolled or coiled):
to unroll a bolt of fabric.
to lay open; display; reveal.
Obsolete. to strike from a roll or register.
verb (used without object)
to become unrolled or spread out:
The scrolls unroll easily.
to become continuously visible or apparent:
The landscape unrolled before our eyes.
Origin of unroll
late Middle English
First recorded in 1375-1425, unroll is from the late Middle English word unrollen. See un-2, roll Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for unroll
Historical Examples
  • He had waited too often and futilely in the past for porcupines to unroll, to waste any more time.

    White Fang Jack London
  • Has existence only to unroll a tableau, every detail of which is graven on my heart?

    Gerald Fitzgerald Charles James Lever
  • And with the word he began to unroll the parchment carefully.

    The God of Love Justin Huntly McCarthy
  • This done, we began to unroll the wrappings of the holy corpse.

    Cleopatra H. Rider Haggard
  • We unroll the charts, and differ in opinion over them more remarkably than ever.

    Rambles Beyond Railways; Wilkie Collins
  • Now unroll the cylinder and the projection will appear as in fig. 2.

  • They empty the contents of a bag and begin to unroll its slow length.

    Poachers and Poaching John Watson
  • And did she give you that penny which was in the paper that I saw you unroll so carefully at the door?

    Rathfelder's Hotel Annie E. Bosworth
  • The leaves are pinnate, and they unroll, when they expand, like those of the ferns.

    Botany for Ladies Jane Loudon
  • The chief was awakened, and he told them to unroll what they had brought.

British Dictionary definitions for unroll


to open out or unwind (something rolled, folded, or coiled) or (of something rolled, etc) to become opened out or unwound
to make or become visible or apparent, esp gradually; unfold
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 unroll

early 15c., from un- (2) + roll (v.). Related: Unrolled; unrolling.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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