Definition of road in English:

Share this entry


Pronunciation: /rōd/


1A wide way leading from one place to another, especially one with a specially prepared surface that vehicles can use.
Example sentences
  • New roads were constructed as wide boulevards to prevent fires from spreading from one side of the street to the other.
  • Consequently, in the absence of a good public transport system, the vehicles on Delhi's roads have swollen to around 2.7 million.
  • Training horses to accept traffic, road works and roadside obstacles is more important than ever in these days of litigation and the increasing number of vehicles on the roads.
street, lane, avenue, boulevard, freeway, highway, parkway, thoroughfare, thruway, turnpike
1.1The part of a road intended for vehicles, especially in contrast to a shoulder or sidewalk.
Example sentences
  • Two projectors set up in front of a crumbling assemblage of wood shacks beamed dual images of the gangs onto a ten-story housing project as the inhabitants of the barrio formed a crowd in the middle of the road.
  • Two more black cars were parked, blocking the road in front of Zoe.
1.2 [with modifier] historical A regular trade route for a particular commodity: the Silk Road across Asia to the West
1.3 Mining An underground passage or gallery in a mine.
1.4North American A railroad.
1.5British A railroad track, especially as clear (or otherwise) for a train to proceed: they waited for a clear road at Hellifield Junction
2A series of events or a course of action that will lead to a particular outcome: he’s well on the road to recovery
More example sentences
  • Understanding this can aid teachers and learners as they make sense of interpersonal conflict on the road to forming successful groups.
  • Even though her storyline - which follows João on the road to stardom, with several stopovers in prison - can seem underdeveloped, Ramos is always charismatic.
  • A gang of petty thieves make a big score on an armored van, but instead of landing on easy street, they find themselves on the road to frustration.
2.1A particular course or direction taken or followed: the low road of apathy and alienation
More example sentences
  • He is the great model of the free artist who follows his own, unimproved road.
  • The bottom line to this week's two-step is that Zoellick and Lamy have a long road to walk before they get back to Doha.
  • Authors of burlesque usually avoided the high ethical road of the satirist, who ridicules a folly or fashion in the hope of eradicating it.
3 (usually roads) (often in place names) another term for roadstead. Boston Roads



by road

In or on a road vehicle.
Example sentences
  • Thought these systems are shipped out of Limerick by road, using up to a hundred trucks that pull right up to the facility loading bays.
  • Lying just inside the official boundary line between the two countries, Gretna was about 350 miles by road from London.
  • This is covered in corrugated metal, and was prefabricated in Thessalonica, brought in by road and installed by crane - the only major part of the building not made locally.

down the road

informal, chiefly North American In the future.
Example sentences
  • Ultimately, you'll need to establish that this greater worth translates into a higher sales price down the road.
  • However, most respondents indicated they will feel more comfortable setting up a business five or ten years down the road.
  • I think, down the road, they appreciate and remember that you took the time to tell them, he said.

the end of the road

see end.

hit the road

see hit.

in the (or one's) road

informal In someone’s way.
Example sentences
  • If he's here too long he gets in my road, Cathy confirms.
  • People in their right minds kept well out of his road.
  • At feeding time, the dominant mare will walk up to the feed trough and pin her ears back, immediately all the other horses move out of her road.

one for the road

informal A final drink, especially an alcoholic one, before leaving for home.
Example sentences
  • You've got a thirty - mile drive home on icy roads and your friends are encouraging you to have another drink - one for the road.
  • He'd had a few, one or two, and one for the road, and decided to go into jealousy mode.
  • Ah then you'll be wanting one for the road then.

on the road

1On a long journey or series of journeys, especially as part of one’s job as a sales representative or a performer.
Example sentences
  • His daughter-in-law, Janet, is one of eight sales representatives who are on the road daily.
  • In the end, Forney takes his show on the road, performing live with his son at a heartland music festival to a bewildered audience of twelve.
  • Shortly afterwards, the group does break with Towle, who's talking about accompanying them on the road.
on tour, touring, traveling
1.1(Of a person) without a permanent home and moving from place to place.
Example sentences
  • He had moved out of the house he shared with his wife, Sharon, and was on the road with a teenage junkie named Dawn.
2(Of a car) in use; able to be driven.
2.1 (often on-the-road) (Of or with reference to the price of a motor vehicle) including the cost of license plates, tax, etc., so the vehicle is fully ready for use on public roads: we found on-the-road prices from 5,780 to 6,151 dollars

out of the (or one's) road

informal Out of someone’s way.

a road to nowhere


take to the road (or take the road)

Set out on a journey or series of journeys.
Example sentences
  • About two dozen artists are taking to the road in key electoral battleground states in hopes that their music can sway undecided voters to join their cause.
  • On the heels of his last album ‘Gone In The Head’, Wally and his band are taking to the road again with a new show.
  • The energetic troupe of performers from the Open Door Drama Group in Laois will once again be taking to the road.



Example sentences
  • The Clinton administration elicited an outpouring of public support when it proposed a ban on roadbuilding, logging, and other destructive activities on 58.5 million roadless acres of national forest.
  • Meanwhile, the overwhelming public support for protecting the last remaining Tongass roadless areas has been tossed out the window.
  • More than a million public comments were filed in support of the roadless rule, and more than 90 percent of the public comments on the snowmobile issue supported a ban.


Old English rād 'journey on horseback', 'foray'; of Germanic origin; related to the verb ride.

  • In Old English road meant ‘a journey on horseback’, and the word is related to ride. The sense of ‘a wide track to travel on’, the equivalent of street, did not appear until the end of the 16th century. The middle of the road has been the place for moderate views since the 1890s, originally in the context of US politics. The phrase has referred to easy-listening music since the late 1950s. The road less travelled to refer to an unconventional or unusual course of action comes from the poem ‘The Road Not Taken’ (1916) by Robert Frost: ‘Two roads diverged in a wood, and I— / I took the one less travelled by, /And that has made all the difference’. See also hell, rage

Words that rhyme with road

abode, bestrode, bode, code, commode, corrode, download, encode, erode, explode, forebode, goad, implode, load, lode, middle-of-the-road, mode, node, ode, offload, outrode, rode, sarod, Spode, strode, toad, upload, woad

For editors and proofreaders

Syllabification: road

Share this entry

What do you find interesting about this word or phrase?

Comments that don't adhere to our Community Guidelines may be moderated or removed.