Try Our Apps


Supposedly vs. Supposably


[ri-volv] /rɪˈvɒlv/
verb (used without object), revolved, revolving.
to move in a circular or curving course or orbit:
The earth revolves around the sun.
to turn around or rotate, as on an axis:
The wheel revolves slowly.
to proceed or occur in a round or cycle; come around again in the process of time; recur.
to be revolved in the mind.
to focus or center on.
verb (used with object), revolved, revolving.
to cause to turn around, as on an axis.
to cause to move in a circular or curving course, as about a central point.
to think about; consider.
Origin of revolve
1350-1400; Middle English revolven < Latin revolvere to roll back, equivalent to re- re- + volvere to roll, turn round
Related forms
revolvable, adjective
revolvably, adverb
unrevolved, adjective
Can be confused
revolve, rotate.
1. orbit, circle. 2. See turn. 8. ponder, study. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
Cite This Source
Examples from the Web for revolve
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • He began to revolve in his mind some decided means of coming to an explanation with Beatrix.

    Beatrix Honore de Balzac
  • Indeed, even while he was speaking the wheels of Fate had already begun to revolve.

    The Missionary George Griffith
  • He sat in the dark till the wheel began to revolve, then struck a sudden light and found the ghost.

    Old-Time Gardens Alice Morse Earle
  • But the empire had extended too far west to revolve about that distant pivot.

    A Short History of Spain Mary Platt Parmele
  • The sun seems to revolve around the earth, and the earth seems to stand still.

    The Universe a Vast Electric Organism George Woodward Warder
British Dictionary definitions for revolve


to move or cause to move around a centre or axis; rotate
(intransitive) to occur periodically or in cycles
to consider or be considered
(intransitive; foll by around or about) to be centred or focused (upon): Juliet's thoughts revolved around Romeo
(theatre) a circular section of a stage that can be rotated by electric power to provide a scene change
Derived Forms
revolvable, adjective
revolvably, adverb
Word Origin
C14: from Latin revolvere, from re- + volvere to roll, wind
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
Cite This Source
Word Origin and History for revolve

late 14c., "to change direction, bend around, turn (the eyes) back," from Old French revolver and directly from Latin revolvere "roll back, unroll, unwind; happen again, return; go over, repeat," from re- "back, again" (see re-) + volvere "to roll" (see volvox). In 15c., "to turn over (in the mind or heart), meditate." Meaning "travel around a central point" first recorded 1660s (earlier "cause to travel in an orbit around a central point," mid-15c.). Related: Revolved; revolving.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
Cite This Source

Word of the Day

Difficulty index for revolve

Most English speakers likely know this word

Word Value for revolve

Scrabble Words With Friends