Meaning of ROUND in English


Frequency: The word is one of the 1500 most common words in English.

Note: 'Round' is an adverb and preposition that has the same meanings as ‘a~’. 'Round' is often used with verbs of movement, such as ‘walk’ and ‘drive’, and also in phrasal verbs such as ‘get ~’ and ‘hand ~’. 'Round' is commoner in British English than American English, and it is slightly more informal.

Please look at category 20 to see if the expression you are looking for is shown under another headword.


To be positioned ~ a place or object means to sur~ it or be on all sides of it. To move ~ a place means to go along its edge, back to the point where you started.

They were sitting ~ the kitchen table...

All ~ us was desert...


Round is also an adverb.

Visibility was good all ~...

The goldfish swam ~ and ~ in their tiny bowls.

ADV: ADV after v


If you move ~ a corner or obstacle, you move to the other side of it. If you look ~ a corner or obstacle, you look to see what is on the other side.

Suddenly a car came ~ a corner on the opposite side...

One of his men tapped and looked ~ the door.



You use ~ to say that something happens in or relates to different parts of a place, or is near a place.

He happens to own half the land ~ here...

I think he has earned the respect of leaders all ~ the world...


Round is also an adverb.

Shirley found someone to show them ~...

So you’re going to have a look ~?

ADV: ADV after v, n ADV


If a wheel or object spins ~, it turns on its axis.

Holes can be worn remarkably quickly by a wheel going ~ at 60mph...

ADV: ADV after v


If you turn ~, you turn so that you are facing or going in the opposite direction.

She paused, but did not turn ~...

The wind veered ~ to the east...

ADV: ADV after v


If you move things ~, you move them so they are in different places.

I’ve already moved things ~ a bit to make it easier for him.

ADV: ADV after v


If you hand or pass something ~, it is passed from person to person in a group.

John handed ~ the plate of sandwiches.

ADV: ADV after v

Round is also a preposition.

They started handing the microphone out ~ the girls at the front...



If you go ~ to someone’s house, you visit them.

I think we should go ~ and tell Kevin to turn his music down...

He came ~ with a bottle of champagne.

ADV: ADV after v

Round is also a preposition in non-standard English.

I went ~ my wife’s house.



You use ~ in informal expressions such as sit ~ or hang ~ when you are saying that someone is spending time in a place and is not doing anything very important. (BRIT)

As we sat ~ chatting, I began to think I’d made a mistake...

ADV: ADV after v

Round is also a preposition.

She would spend the day hanging ~ street corners...



If something is built or based ~ a particular idea, that idea is the basis for it.

That was for a design built ~ an existing American engine...



If you get ~ a problem or difficulty, you find a way of dealing with it.

Don’t just immediately give up but think about ways ~ a problem...



If you win someone ~, or if they come ~, they change their mind about something and start agreeing with you.

He did his best to talk me ~, but I wouldn’t speak to him...

ADV: ADV after v


You use ~ in expressions such as this time ~ or to come ~ when you are describing something that has happened before or things that happen regularly.

In the past, the elections have been marked by hundreds of murders, but this time ~ the violence has been much more limited...

ADV: n ADV, ADV after v


You can use ~ to give the measurement of the outside of something that is shaped like a circle or a cylinder.

I’m about two inches larger ~ the waist.


Round is also an adverb.

It’s six feet high and five feet ~.



You use ~ in front of times or amounts to indicate that they are approximate.

I go to bed ~ 11:00 at night.

ADV: ADV amount vagueness


In spoken English, ~ about means approximately. (mainly BRIT)

Round about one and a half million people died.

PREP-PHRASE vagueness


You say all ~ to emphasize that something affects all parts of a situation or all members of a group. (mainly BRIT)

It ought to make life much easier all ~...

PHRASE: cl PHR emphasis


If you say that something is going ~ and ~ in your head, you mean that you can’t stop thinking about it.

It all keeps going ~ and ~ in my head till I don’t know where I am.

PHRASE: V inflects


If something happens all year ~, it happens throughout the year.

Many of these plants are evergreen, so you can enjoy them all year ~...

PHRASE: PHR after v


~ the corner: see corner

the other way ~: see way



Frequency: The word is one of the 1500 most common words in English.


A ~ of events is a series of related events, especially one which comes after or before a similar series of events.

This is the latest ~ of job cuts aimed at making the company more competitive...

N-COUNT: with supp, oft N of n


In sport, a ~ is a series of games in a competition. The winners of these games go on to play in the next ~, and so on, until only one player or team is left. the third ~ of the Pilkington Cup...

After ~ three, two Americans share the lead.

= heat

N-COUNT: usu adj N, N num


In a boxing or wrestling match, a ~ is one of the periods during which the boxers or wrestlers fight.

He was declared the victor in the 11th ~...

N-COUNT: usu adj N, N num


A ~ of golf is one game, usually including 18 holes.

...two ~s of golf...

N-COUNT: usu N of n, N of num


If you do your ~s or your ~, you make a series of visits to different places or people, for example as part of your job. (mainly BRIT; in AM, usually use route )

The consultants still did their morning ~s...

N-COUNT: usu supp N


If you buy a ~ of drinks, you buy a drink for each member of the group of people that you are with.

They sat on the clubhouse terrace, downing a ~ of drinks...

N-COUNT: usu with supp


A ~ of ammunition is the bullet or bullets released when a gun is fired.

...firing 1650 ~s of ammunition during a period of ten minutes.

N-COUNT: usu num N, N of n


If there is a ~ of applause, everyone claps their hands to welcome someone or to show that they have enjoyed something.

Sue got a sympathetic ~ of applause.

N-COUNT: N of n


In music, a ~ is a simple song sung by several people in which each person sings a different part of the song at the same time.



If a story, idea, or joke is going the ~s or doing the ~s, a lot of people have heard it and are telling it to other people.

This story was going the ~s 20 years ago.

PHRASE: V inflects


If you make the ~s or do the ~s, you visit a series of different places.

After school, I had picked up Nick and Ted and made the ~s of the dry cleaner and the grocery store...

PHRASE: V inflects, usu PHR of n


(~er, ~est)


Something that is ~ is shaped like a circle or ball.

She had small feet and hands and a flat, ~ face.

...the ~ church known as The New Temple.



A ~ number is a multiple of 10, 100, 1000, and so on. Round numbers are used instead of precise ones to give the general idea of a quantity or proportion.

A million pounds seemed a suitably ~ number.



(~s, ~ing, ~ed)


If you ~ a place or obstacle, you move in a curve past the edge or corner of it.

The house disappeared from sight as we ~ed a corner...

= go ~



If you ~ an amount up or down, or if you ~ it off, you change it to the nearest whole number or nearest multiple of 10, 100, 1000 and so on.

We needed to do decimals to ~ up and ~ down numbers...

The fraction was then multiplied by 100 and ~ed to the nearest half or whole number...

I’ll ~ it off to about ?30.

VERB: V n with adv, be V-ed to amount, V n adv to amount


see also ~ed

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