roving

1 [roh-ving]
adjective
1.
roaming or wandering.
2.
not assigned or restricted to any particular location, area, topic, etc.: a roving editor.
3.
not assigned to any particular diplomatic post but having a special mission: a roving ambassador.

Origin:
1590–1600; rove1 + -ing2

rovingly, adverb
rovingness, noun
Dictionary.com Unabridged

roving

2 [roh-ving]
noun
1.
a soft strand of fiber that has been twisted, attenuated, and freed of foreign matter preparatory to its conversion into yarn.
2.
the final phase of carding, in which this is done.

Origin:
1785–95; rove3 + -ing1

rove

1 [rohv]
verb (used without object), roved, roving.
1.
to wander about without definite destination; move hither and thither at random, especially over a wide area.
verb (used with object), roved, roving.
2.
to wander over or through; traverse: to rove the woods.
noun
3.
an act or instance of roving.

Origin:
1490–1500; orig., to shoot at a random target; perhaps < Scandinavian; compare Old Norse rāfa to stray; but compare also Old French raver to roam


1. stroll, amble, stray. See roam.

rove

2 [rohv]
verb
a simple past tense and past participle of reeve2.

rove

3 [rohv]
verb (used with object), roved, roving.
1.
to form (slivers of wool, cotton, etc.) into slightly twisted strands in a preparatory process of spinning.
2.
to draw fibers or the like through an eye or other small opening.
3.
to attenuate, compress, and twist slightly in carding.
noun
4.
British, roving2.

Origin:
1780–90; of obscure origin

Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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Collins
World English Dictionary
rove1 (rəʊv)
 
vb
1.  to wander about (a place) with no fixed direction; roam
2.  (intr) (of the eyes) to look around; wander
3.  have a roving eye to show a widespread amorous interest in the opposite sex
4.  (intr) Australian rules football to play as a rover
 
n
5.  the act of roving
 
[C15 roven (in archery) to shoot at a target chosen at random (C16: to wander, stray), from Scandinavian; compare Icelandic rāfa to wander]

rove2 (rəʊv)
 
vb
1.  (tr) to pull out and twist (fibres of wool, cotton, etc) lightly, as before spinning or in carding
 
n
2.  wool, cotton, etc, thus prepared
 
[C18: of obscure origin]

rove3 (rəʊv)
 
n
a metal plate through which a rivet is passed and then clenched over
 
[C15: from Scandinavian; compare Icelandic ro]

rove4 (rəʊv)
 
vb
a past tense and past participle of reeve

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009
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Etymonline
Word Origin & History

rove
"to wander with no fixed destination," 1536, possibly a Midlands dialectal variant of northern Eng. and Scottish rave "to wander, stray," from M.E. raven, probably from O.N. rafa "to wander, rove." Infl. by rover (q.v.). Earliest sense was "to shoot arrows at a mark selected at pleasure or at random"
(1474).
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Encyclopedia Britannica
Encyclopedia

roving

in archery, form of practice or competition dating from at least the 16th century, when it was practiced by the Honourable Artillery Company at Finsbury Fields near London. Archers set up many marks on the field and shot from one to the next in sequence, the object being, as in golf, to use the fewest shots in completing the course. Roving is similar to modern field archery, which, in fact, is sometimes called roving.

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Encyclopedia Britannica, 2008. Encyclopedia Britannica Online.
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Example sentences
Run roving check points along main roads for extended periods.
While roving the countryside, meet locals by eating pub grub.
Private armies and roving marauders were outlawed long ago for reasons that appear valid today.
Roving thoughts and provocations from our writers.
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