[ uh-round ]
/ əˈraʊnd /




    been around, having had much worldly experience: He's been around and isn't likely to be taken in.

Origin of around

1250–1300; Middle English around(e). See a-1, round1 Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

British Dictionary definitions for been around


/ (əˈraʊnd) /



Word Origin for around

C17 (rare earlier): from a- ² + round


In American English, around is usually used instead of round in adverbial and prepositional senses, except in a few fixed phrases such as all year round. The use of around in adverbial senses is less common in British English
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

Word Origin and History for been around



c.1300, "in circumference," from phrase on round. Rare before 1600. In sense of "here and there with no fixed direction" it is 1776, American English (properly about). Of time, from 1888. To have been around "gained worldly experience" is from 1927, U.S. colloquial.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

Idioms and Phrases with been around (1 of 2)

been around

Been present or active; especially, gained experience or sophistication. For example, This book isn't new; it's been around for many years, or This strategy won't fool Bill; he's been around. [First half of 1900s] Also see get around.

Idioms and Phrases with been around (2 of 2)


In addition to the idioms beginning with around

  • around the bend
  • around the corner

also see:

  • beat about (around) the bush
  • been around
  • boss someone around
  • bring around
  • cast about (around)
  • come around
  • enough to go around
  • every time one turns around
  • fool around
  • fuck around
  • full circle (what goes around comes around)
  • get around
  • get around to
  • go around in circles
  • hang around
  • horse around
  • kick around
  • kid around
  • knock about (around)
  • know one's way around
  • mess around
  • nose about (around)
  • pal around with
  • play around
  • poke around
  • push around
  • rally around
  • roll around
  • run around in circles
  • run around like a chicken
  • run around with
  • run rings around
  • screw around
  • scrounge around
  • shop around
  • sleep around
  • stick around
  • talk around
  • tear around
  • throw one's weight around
  • turn around
  • twist around one's finger
  • up and about (around)

Also see underround.

The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.