adjective, round·er, round·est.
- Also round of beef.the portion of the thigh of beef below the rump and above the leg.
- Informal.round steak.
- 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.
verb (used with object)
verb (used without object)
- to complete or perfect; finish.
- to express as a round number, usually to the nearest multiple of 10.
- 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.
- to drive or bring (cattle, sheep, etc.) together.
- to assemble; gather: to round up all the suspects in an investigation.
- round and round,
- round angle,
- round arch,
- round atelectasis,
- round barrow
- (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.
- 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 round1
verb (tr, adverb)
- forming or expressed by an integer or whole number, with no fraction
- expressed to the nearest ten, hundred, or thousandin round figures
- in full detail
- theatrewith the audience all round the stage
- 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
- to pronounce (a speech sound) with rounded lips
- to purse (the lips)
Word Origin for round
late 13c., from Anglo-French rounde, Old French roont (12c., Modern French rond), probably originally *redond, from Vulgar Latin *retundus (cf. Provençal redon, Spanish redondo, Old Italian ritondo), from Latin rotundus "like a wheel, circular, round," related to rota "wheel" (see rotary).
As an adverb from c.1300; as a preposition from c.1600. In many uses it is a shortened form of around. The French word is the source of Middle Dutch ront (Dutch rond), Middle High German runt (German rund) and similar Germanic words.
Of numbers from mid-14c., from earlier sense "full, complete, brought to completion" (mid-14c., notion of symmetry extended to that of completeness). First record of round trip is from 1844, originally of railways. Round heels attested from 1926, in reference to incompetent boxers, 1927 in reference to loose women, in either case implying an inability to avoid ending up flat on one's back.
early 14c., "a spherical body," from round (adj.) and Old French roond. Cf. Dutch rond, Danish and Swedish rund, German runde, all nouns from adjectives. Meaning "large round piece of beef" is recorded from 1650s. Theatrical sense (in phrase in the round) is recorded from 1944. Sense of "circuit performed by a sentinel" is from 1590s; that of "recurring course of time" is from 1710. Meaning "song sung by two or more, beginning at different times" is from 1520s. Golfing sense attested from 1775. Meaning "quantity of liquor served to a company at one time" is from 1630s; that of "single bout in a fight or boxing match" is from 1812; "single discharge of a firearm" is from 1725. Sense of "recurring session of meetings or negotiations" is from 1964.
late 14c., "to make round," from round (adj.). Sense of "make a circuit round" is from 1590s. Sense of "bring to completeness" is from c.1600; meaning "to approximate (a number)" is from 1934. Meaning "turn round and face, turn on and assault" is from 1882. Round out "fill up" is from 1856. Related: Rounded; rounding.
Collect or gather in a body, as in We'll have to round up some more volunteers for the food drive, or The police rounded up all the suspects. This term comes from the West, where since the mid-1800s it has been used for collecting livestock by riding around the herd and driving the animals together. By about 1875 it was extended to other kinds of gathering together.
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
- 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.