[ ruhn-uh-round ]
/ ˈrʌn əˌraʊnd /


indecisive or evasive treatment, especially in response to a request: Ask for a raise and he'll give you the runaround.
Printing. an arrangement of type in which several lines are set in narrower measure than the others in a column to accommodate an illustration, initial, or the like.



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Origin of runaround

1870–75, Americanism; noun use of verb phrase run around Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2020

Example sentences from the Web for runaround

  • The runaround concluded with King and Brando exchanging lip kisses.

    Courting Brando|Harold Evans|December 19, 2008|DAILY BEAST
  • Pembroke watched him hurry off to service a car with a sense of having been given the runaround.

    The Perfectionists|Arnold Castle

British Dictionary definitions for runaround

run around

verb (intr, adverb) informal

(often foll by with) to associate habitually (with)
to behave in a fickle or promiscuous manner

noun run-around

informal deceitful or evasive treatment of a person (esp in the phrase give or get the run-around)
printing an arrangement of printed matter in which the column width is narrowed to accommodate an illustration
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

Idioms and Phrases with runaround (1 of 2)


see get the runaround.

Idioms and Phrases with runaround (2 of 2)

run around


Go about hurriedly here and there, as in I have been running around all day so I want to stay home tonight and relax. [Early 1900s]


Also, run around with. Associate or consort with socially, as in At college she began to run around with a very liberal group. [Late 1800s]


Be sexually unfaithful, as in She caught him running around just once too often and finally sued for divorce. [Early 1900s]

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