from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • adv. On all sides: dirty clothes lying around.
  • adv. In close to all sides from all directions: a field bordered around with tall trees.
  • adv. In a circle or with a circular motion: spun around twice.
  • adv. In circumference or perimeter: a pond two miles around.
  • adv. In succession or rotation: passed the collection plate around; seasons that rolled around each year.
  • adv. In or toward the opposite direction or position: wheeled around to face the attacker.
  • adv. To or among various places; here and there: wander around.
  • adv. To a specific place: Come around again sometime.
  • adv. In or near one's current location: waited around for the next flight.
  • adv. From the beginning to the end: frigid weather the year around.
  • adv. Approximately; about: weighed around 30 pounds; around $1.3 billion in debt.
  • prep. On all sides of: trees around the field.
  • prep. In such a position as to encircle or surround: a sash around the waist.
  • prep. Here and there within; throughout: on the political stump around the country.
  • prep. In the immediate vicinity of; near: She lives around Norfolk.
  • prep. On or to the farther side of: the house around the corner.
  • prep. So as to pass, bypass, or avoid: a way around an obstacle; got around the difficulty somehow.
  • prep. Approximately at: woke up around seven.
  • prep. In such a way as to have a basis or center in: an economy focused around farming and light industry.
  • adj. Being in existence: Our old dog is no longer around.
  • adj. Being in evidence; present: asked if the store manager was around.
  • idiom been around Informal Had many and varied experiences; been experienced in the ways of the world: a young executive who has been around.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • prep. Defining a circle or closed curve containing a thing.
  • prep. Following the perimeter of a specified area and returning to the starting point.
  • prep. Following a path which curves near an object, with the object on the inside of the curve
  • prep. Near; in the vicinity of.
  • prep. At various places in.
  • adj. Alive; existing.
  • adv. Generally.
  • adv. From place to place, or from one place to another
  • adv. Partially or completely rotated, including to face in the opposite direction.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • adv. In a circle; circularly; on every side; round.
  • adv. In a circuit; here and there within the surrounding space; all about.
  • adv. Near; in the neighborhood.
  • prep. On all sides of; encircling; encompassing; so as to make the circuit of; about.
  • prep. From one part to another of; at random through; about; on another side of

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • In a circle or sphere; round about; on every side: as, a dense mist lay around.
  • From place to place; here and there; about: as, to travel around from city to city. [U. S.]
  • About; near: as, he waited around till the fight was over. [U. S.]
  • About; on all sides; encircling; encompassing.
  • From place to place; at random: as, to roam around the country. [U. S.]

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • adv. in circumference
  • adv. used of movement to or among many different places or in no particular direction
  • adv. to a particular destination either specified or understood
  • adv. (of quantities) imprecise but fairly close to correct
  • adv. all around or on all sides
  • adv. in a circle or circular motion
  • adv. in the area or vicinity
  • adv. from beginning to end; throughout
  • adv. in or to a reversed position or direction
  • adv. by a circular or circuitous route


from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

Middle English : probably a-, in; see a-2 + round, circle; see round1.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

From Middle English around, arounde, from a- (from Old English a- ("on, at")) + Middle English round ("circle, round"), equivalent to a- +‎ round. Cognate with Scots aroond, aroon ("around"). Displaced earlier Middle English umbe, embe ("around") (from Old English ymbe ("around")). See umbe.



Log in or sign up to get involved in the conversation. It's quick and easy.