Definition of roil in English:

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Pronunciation: /rɔɪl/


1 [with object] literary Make (a liquid) turbid or muddy by disturbing the sediment: winds roil these waters
1.1 [no object] (Of a liquid) move in a turbulent, swirling manner: the sea roiled below her
More example sentences
  • The water roils around the combatants, and the sky is filled with clouds and tiny lines that intensify the sense of cataclysm.
  • The core mantle boundary is a complex and dynamic area that churns and chugs as the liquid iron core roils at the bottom of the rock-like mantle.
  • The North Sea roils just off the former hippie village of Monster, 40 miles southwest of Amsterdam.
2 US term for rile (sense 1).
Example sentences
  • That roiled his colleagues and, some argued, prolonged a stoppage that wiped out the World Series.
  • That comment still roils the ultra-liberal faculty at the university.
  • Any religious film with violence is bound to roil some people.


Late 16th century: perhaps from Old French ruiler 'mix mortar', from late Latin regulare 'regulate'.

  • rile from early 19th century:

    Rile ‘to anger’ and roil ‘to anger or to churn’ (late 16th century) are both the same word probably from Old French ruiler ‘mix mortar’.

Words that rhyme with roil

boil, Boyle, broil, coil, Dáil, Doyle, embroil, Fianna Fáil, foil, Hoyle, moil, noil, oil, Royle, soil, spoil, toil, voile

For editors and proofreaders

Line breaks: roil

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