ran ‧ dom AC /ˈrændəm/ BrE AmE adjective
[ Word Family: noun : ↑ randomness ; adverb : ↑ randomly ; adjective : ↑ random ]
[ Date: 1300-1400 ; Language: Old French ; Origin: randon 'great speed or force' , from randir 'to run' ]
1 . happening or chosen without any definite plan, aim, or pattern:
The company has introduced random drug testing of its employees.
A few random shots were fired.
We looked at a random sample of 120 families.
a random selection of women who were in the shop
2 . at random without any definite plan, aim, or pattern
choose/select/pick something at random
The gang picked their victims at random.
—randomly adverb :
seven randomly chosen numbers
—randomness noun [uncountable]
• • •
▪ a random sample
A test was carried out on a random sample of the cattle.
▪ a random selection
He looked at a random selection of the files.
▪ a random number
Pick a random number.
▪ a random sequence
They were asked to memorize a random sequence of numbers.
▪ random checks/tests
He believes the police should be able to carry out random breath tests.
▪ random violence
The family were caught up in the random violence that haunts a neighbourhood ruled by gangs.
▪ completely/entirely random
The atomic particles seem to move in a completely random direction.
▪ apparently/seemingly random
a wave of apparently random attacks
▪ purely/truly random
a purely random sequence of numbers
▪ in random order
The names are in random order.