Roland

[roh-luh nd]
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noun

Italian Orlando. the greatest of the paladins in the Charlemagne cycle of the chansons de geste, renowned for his prowess and the manner of his death in the battle of Roncesvalles (a.d. 778), also for his five days' combat with Oliver in which neither was the victor.
a male given name: from Germanic words meaning “glory” and “land.”

Idioms

    a Roland for an Oliver, retaliation or a retort equal to its provocation; a blow for a blow.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for roland

Contemporary Examples of roland

Historical Examples of roland

  • This lofty and blase greeting can come from none other than Roland Barnette.

    The Fortune Hunter

    Louis Joseph Vance

  • It was here that Roland got a look from Mr. Burnham that withered him completely.

    The Fortune Hunter

    Louis Joseph Vance

  • "Yes, that was it," Roland put in hastily, seeing his chance to mend matters.

    The Fortune Hunter

    Louis Joseph Vance

  • "I'm afraid you're a little too sure, Sam," Roland contributed tactfully.

    The Fortune Hunter

    Louis Joseph Vance

  • It was at this point that Roland rose to the occasion like the noble ass he is.

    The Fortune Hunter

    Louis Joseph Vance


British Dictionary definitions for roland

Roland

noun

the greatest of the legendary 12 peers (paladins, of whom Oliver was another) in attendance on Charlemagne; he died in battle at Roncesvalles (778 ad)
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 roland

Roland

masc. proper name, from French, from Old High German Hrodland, literally "(having a) famous land." As legendary nephew of Charlemagne, celebrated in "Chanson de Roland," c.1300. His comrade was Oliver, hence a Roland for an Oliver (1610s) in expressions meaning "to give as good as one gets, tit for tat."

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper