[ round ]
See synonyms for: roundroundedrounderrounding on

adjective,round·er, round·est.
  1. having a flat, circular surface, as a disk.

  2. ring-shaped, as a hoop.

  1. curved like part of a circle, as an outline.

  2. having a circular cross section, as a cylinder; cylindrical.

  3. spherical or globular, as a ball.

  4. shaped more or less like a part of a sphere; hemispherical.

  5. free from angularity; consisting of full, curved lines or shapes, as handwriting or parts of the body.

  6. executed with or involving circular motion.

  7. full, complete, or entire: a round dozen.

  8. noting, formed, or expressed by an integer or whole number with no fraction.

  9. expressed, given, or exact to the nearest multiple or power of ten; in tens, hundreds, thousands, or the like: in round numbers.

  10. roughly correct; approximate: a round guess.

  11. considerable in amount; ample: a round sum of money.

  12. brought to completeness or perfection.

  13. full and sonorous, as sound.

  14. vigorous or brisk: a round trot.

  15. straightforward, plain, or candid; outspoken: a round scolding.

  16. positive or unqualified: a round assertion.

  1. any round shape, as a circle, ring or sphere.

  2. a circular, ring-shaped, curved, or spherical object; a rounded form.

  1. something circular in cross section, as a rung of a ladder or chair.

  2. Sometimes rounds . a completed course of time, series of events or operations, etc., ending at a point corresponding to that at the beginning: We waited through the round of many years.

  3. any complete course, series, or succession: The strike was settled after a long round of talks; a round of parties.

  4. Often rounds . a going around from place to place, as in a habitual or definite circuit: a doctor's rounds.

  5. a completed course or spell of activity, commonly one of a series, in some play or sport: the second round of a tournament.

  6. a recurring period of time, succession of events, duties, etc.: the daily round.

  7. an entire range: the round of human capabilities.

  8. a single outburst, as of applause or cheers.

  9. a single discharge of shot by each of a number of guns, rifles, etc.

  10. a single discharge by one firearm.

  11. a charge of ammunition for a single shot.

  12. a single serving, especially of drink, made more or less simultaneously to everyone present, as at table or at a bar: The next round is on me.

  13. movement in a circle or around an axis.

  14. Cooking.

    • Also round of beef . the portion of the thigh of beef below the rump and above the leg.

    • Informal. round steak.

  15. a slice, as of bread.

  16. Archery. a specified number of arrows shot from a specified distance from the target in accordance with the rules.

  17. one of a series of three-minute periods making up a boxing match: a 15-round bout.

  18. Music.

    • a short, rhythmical canon at the unison, in which the several voices enter at equally spaced intervals of time.

    • rounds, the order followed in ringing a peal of bells in diatonic sequence from the highest to the lowest.

  19. Golf. a playing of the complete course.

  20. Cards. a division of play in a game, consisting of a turn each for every player to bid, bet, play a card, deal the cards, or be dealt cards.

  1. throughout or from the beginning to the end of a recurring period of time: all year round.

  2. Also 'round . around: The music goes round and round.

  1. throughout (a period of time): a resort visited all round the year.

  2. around: It happened round noon.

verb (used with object)
  1. to make round.

  2. to free from angularity; fill out symmetrically; make plump.

  1. to bring to completeness or perfection; finish.

  2. Jewelry. to form (a gem) roughly (sometimes followed by up); girdle.

  3. to end (a sentence, paragraph, etc.) with something specified: He rounded his speech with a particularly apt quotation.

  4. to encircle or surround.

  5. to make a complete circuit of; pass completely around.

  6. to make a turn or partial circuit around or to the other side of: to round a corner.

  7. to cause to move in a circle; turn around.

  8. Phonetics.

    • to make the opening at (the lips) relatively round or pursed during an utterance.

    • to pronounce (a speech sound, especially a vowel) with rounded lips; labialize.

    • to contract (the lips) laterally.: Compare spread (def. 14b), unround.

  9. Mathematics. to replace by the nearest multiple of 10, with 5 being increased to the next highest multiple: 15,837 can be rounded to 15,840; then to 15,800; then to 16,000.

verb (used without object)
  1. to become round.

  2. to become free from angularity; become plump.

  1. to develop to completeness or perfection.

  2. to take a circular course; make a circuit, as a guard.

  3. to make a turn or partial circuit around something.

  4. to turn around as on an axis: to round on one's heels.

  5. to reduce successively the number of digits to the right of the decimal point of a mixed number by dropping the final digit and adding 1 to the next preceding digit if the dropped digit was 5 or greater, or leaving the preceding digit unchanged if the dropped digit was 4 or less.

Verb Phrases
  1. round off,

    • to complete or perfect; finish.

    • to express as a round number, usually to the nearest multiple of 10.

  2. round out,

    • to complete or perfect: The new coin rounded out his collection.

    • to fill out; become rounder: She rounded out so nicely that everyone soon forgot she had been so ill.

  1. round to, Nautical. to turn a sailing vessel in the direction from which the wind is blowing.

  2. round up,

    • to drive or bring (cattle, sheep, etc.) together.

    • to assemble; gather: to round up all the suspects in an investigation.

Idioms about round

  1. in the round,

    • (of a theater) having a stage completely surrounded by seats for the audience.

    • in the style of theater-in-the-round: The play should be done in the round.

    • in complete detail; from all aspects: a character as seen in the round.

    • (of sculpture) not attached to a supporting background; freestanding.

  2. make the rounds,

    • to go from one place to another, as in making deliveries, paying social visits, or seeking employment.

    • Also go the rounds . to be reported or told; circulate: another rumor making the rounds.

Origin of round

First recorded in 1250–1300; Middle English adjective round(e), roende, rount, from Old French, ront, earlier reont, from Vulgar Latin retondus (unattested), from Latin rotundus “wheel-shaped, round, circular”; Middle English noun partly derivative of the adjective, partly from Old French rond, ronde (derivative of ront ); Middle English verb derivative of the adjective; Middle English adverb and preposition apparently shortened variant of around;see rotund

Other words for round

Opposites for round

Other words from round

  • roundness, noun

Words Nearby round

Other definitions for round (2 of 2)

[ round ]

verb (used with or without object)Archaic.
  1. to whisper.

Origin of round

First recorded before 1000; Middle English rounen, rounne, rounde, ronde “to speak softly, whisper, gossip,” Old English rūnian “to talk low, whisper, mutter,” derivative of rūn “a secret conversation, consultation, counsel”; excrescent -d as in sound;see also rune1 Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023

How to use round in a sentence

British Dictionary definitions for round


/ (raʊnd) /

  1. having a flat circular shape, as a disc or hoop

  2. having the shape of a sphere or ball

  1. curved; not angular

  2. involving or using circular motion

  3. (prenominal) complete; entire: a round dozen

  4. maths

    • forming or expressed by an integer or whole number, with no fraction

    • expressed to the nearest ten, hundred, or thousand: in round figures

  5. (of a sum of money) considerable; ample

  6. fully depicted or developed, as a character in a book

  7. full and plump: round cheeks

  8. (of sound) full and sonorous

  9. (of pace) brisk; lively

  10. (prenominal) (of speech) candid; straightforward; unmodified: a round assertion

  11. (of a vowel) pronounced with rounded lips

  1. a round shape or object

  2. in the round

    • in full detail

    • theatre with the audience all round the stage

  1. a session, as of a negotiation: a round of talks

  2. a series, cycle, or sequence: a giddy round of parties

  3. the daily round the usual activities of one's day

  4. a stage of a competition: he was eliminated in the first round

  5. (often plural) a series of calls, esp in a set order: a doctor's rounds; a milkman's round

  6. a playing of all the holes on a golf course

  7. a single turn of play by each player, as in a card game

  8. one of a number of periods constituting a boxing, wrestling, or other match, each usually lasting three minutes

  9. archery a specified number of arrows shot from a specified distance

  10. a single discharge by a number of guns or a single gun

  11. a bullet, blank cartridge, or other charge of ammunition

  12. a number of drinks bought at one time for a group of people

  13. a single slice of bread or toast or two slices making a single serving of sandwiches

  14. a general outburst of applause, cheering, etc

  15. movement in a circle or around an axis

  16. music a part song in which the voices follow each other at equal intervals at the same pitch

  17. a sequence of bells rung in order of treble to tenor: Compare change (def. 29)

  18. a dance in which the dancers move in a circle

  19. a cut of beef from the thigh between the rump and the shank

  20. go the rounds or make the rounds

    • to go from place to place, as in making deliveries or social calls

    • (of information, rumour, etc) to be passed around, so as to be generally known

  1. surrounding, encircling, or enclosing: a band round her head

  2. on all or most sides of: to look round one

  1. on or outside the circumference or perimeter of: the stands round the racecourse

  2. situated at various points in: a lot of shelves round the house

  3. from place to place in: driving round Ireland

  4. somewhere in or near: to stay round the house

  5. making a circuit or partial circuit about: the ring road round the town

  6. reached by making a partial circuit about something: the shop round the corner

  7. revolving round a centre or axis: the earth's motion round its axis

  8. so as to have a basis in: the story is built round a good plot

  1. on all or most sides: the garden is fenced all round; the crowd gathered round

  2. on or outside the circumference or perimeter: the racing track is two miles round

  1. in all directions from a point of reference: he owns the land for ten miles round

  2. to all members of a group: pass the food round

  3. in rotation or revolution: the wheels turn round

  4. by a circuitous route: the road to the farm goes round by the pond

  5. to a specific place: she came round to see me

  6. all year round throughout the year; in every month

  1. to make or become round

  2. (tr) to encircle; surround

  1. to move or cause to move with circular motion: to round a bend

  2. (tr)

    • to pronounce (a speech sound) with rounded lips

    • to purse (the lips)

Origin of round

C13: from Old French ront, from Latin rotundus round, from rota a wheel


See around

Derived forms of round

  • roundness, noun

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

Cultural definitions for round


A song that can be begun at different times by different singers, but with harmonious singing (see harmony) as the result. “Row, Row, Row Your Boat” is a round.

The New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

Other Idioms and Phrases with round


In addition to the idioms beginning with round

  • round and round
  • round figures
  • round off
  • round on
  • round out
  • round peg in a square hole
  • round robin
  • round the bend
  • round trip
  • round up

also see:

  • all year round
  • bring around (round)
  • come around (round)
  • get around (round)
  • in round numbers
  • in the round
  • make the rounds
  • other way round
  • pull round
  • rally around

Also see underaround.

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