One of the three attitude changes which an aircraft can make, rolling involves rotating the plane on its axis that runs from nose to tail. You can also pitch and yaw a plane or other vehicle which can move about in three dimensions. Rolling in aircraft is accomplished by raising one aileron and lowering the other, which is done by either turning the yoke to one side or moving the stick to one side.

Also short for drum roll. There are different types of drum rolls, such as a buzz roll, long roll, and single-stroke roll.

A roll is a tool for producing a continuous design in tooling, both blind and gold. It consists of a brass wheel, mounted on a brass shank set into a wooden handle. The rim of the wheel is impressed with a continuous pattern.

   /     \                  \
 /         \                |
|     _     |               | brass wheel with pattern
|    <o\    |               | on rim, approximately
|     \  \  |               | 5 cm / 2 inches in diameter
 \      \  \                |
   \_____/\  \              /
           |  |             \
           |  |             |
           |  |             |
           |  |             | brass shaft
           |  |             | approximately
           |  |             | 10 cm / 4 inches long
           |  |             | 10 mm / 1/2 inch in diameter
           |  |             |
           |  |             |
           |  |             |
           |  |             |
           |  |             |
           |  |             |
           |  |             |
          /____\            /
         |      |           \
         |      |           |
         |      |           | wooden handle
         |      |           | approximately
         |      |           | 30 cm / 12 inches long
         |      |           | 25 mm / 1 inch in diameter
         |      |           |
         |      |           V

As with any tooling, tooling using a roll is done by heating it up and impressing the design in (usually) leather. A roll is generally used on the cover of fine binding, though true bookbinding snobs prefer designs made up of individual handle ornaments.

Obviously, a roll creates a continuous design. However, barring an infinite surface, the pattern has to end. Simply ceasing to roll the wheel doesn't work, because the last section of the design will be lighter than the rest of the line. There are two ways to end an ornamental line created by a roll.

  1. A matching pallet
    If you have a pallet of the same design as your roll, you can stop the wheel short of the terminal point of the line. By matching up the design on your pallet, you can finish it neatly. This is hard.
  2. Overstamping
    For this procedure, you simply stop the wheel when the light final impression is where you want the line to end. Then take a ornament, preferably a denser one than the pattern on the roll, and stamp it over the light final impression. This technique is also used to cover the joins between two roll patterns at the corners of designs.
Rolling someone indicates robbing a weak, unconscious or otherwise helpless or incapacitated person. Most frequent use: rolling a drunk.

Rolling a fag in this context would not imply manually producing a cigarette.

A roll is a sequence or pattern of picked banjo notes in Scruggs style bluegrass music.

They tend to be built of 8th notes, with scattered 16th notes as well as the occational quarter note or half note for emphasis or pause.
Rolls are named after the right hand plucking pattern, not the fretted strings that are being plucked. A forward roll is still a forward roll whether it is strings 1-3 being plucked, 1,2, and 5, or 2-4. In short, the patterns are portable.

Rolls are different from riffs in three respects:

  • they typically make up a four beat measure.
  • they are components and can be strung together to create melody as well as counterpoint
  • they are not typically breaks, although they certainly could be building blocks to construct a riff
Some common rolls that Earl Scruggs used on a five string banjo, and examples of them as sequenced string numbers and fingers used (Thumb, Middle, Index):
  • forward roll - TIMTIMTI, 51251251
  • backward roll - T-MITMIT, 3-125125
  • reverse roll - TIMTMITM, 32151231

Example rolls here taken from Earl Scruggs and the 5-String Banjo, ©1968 Peer International Corporation

In phonetics, a roll is a sound made by repeatedly and quickly moving a free-standing part in the mouth. There are three objects that can roll in this way: the tip of the tongue, the uvula, and the lips. The resulting sounds are called a lingual roll, a uvular roll, and a bilabial roll.

The lingual roll is the more familiar "rolled R" used in Italian, and in an exaggerated Scottish accent. Most English speakers notoriously have a hard time rolling their R's. Worldwide it's pretty common, and it's actually English that has the strange R sound.

What happens is that the tip of the tongue very quickly flicks up and taps the alveolar ridge behind the upper teeth. If it does this just once it's called a flap or a tap. (These two terms are distinct, but I'm not sure you could justify the difference in pure physical terms.) But if there are two or more taps/flaps in quick succession, it's called a roll. When an Italian or Finnish speaker produces a rolled [r] by itself they might make three to five taps. In normal connected speech there could be less: only two or three. There is no definite number. However, both Italian and Finnish have double consonants. Not only do they have a sound [r], they have a longer/doubled form of it, [rr]. This is sometimes called a trill, but again I don't think there is a definite physical definition of this. What you have is a single roll with two or more taps, and a double roll with more taps than the single one.

Much rarer is the uvular roll. In fact I find it very hard to perform: I'm not sure that I can do it at all. If you know the singers Edith Piaf or Jacques Brel, their striking rolled throaty R sound is the true uvular R. Most French speakers don't use this sound. Historically, it might have been that French /r/ changed from a lingual roll to a uvular roll. But this sound is difficult and unstable.

Modern French, and other languages that have this or similar R-sounds made in the back of the throat, such as German, Dutch, and Norwegian, have a uvular sound, but it's not a roll: it's not created by actually flapping the uvula freely in the air stream. Rather, it's a fricative. It's created by bringing the back of the tongue very close to the uvula, so that the constriction is tight and causes friction. Acoustically, this is very similar to the uvular roll sound.

Although Scots are stereotypically depicted as rolling their R's, in reality most Scots accents use a single flap/tap for their R. I did once hear a gloriously rolled R in a drunken Glaswegian accent, but it's very rare these days.

Uniquely in the world, the Czech language has a lingual roll that is at the same time a fricative. This is basically indescribable: the composer's name Dvořák contains it, and is usually pronounced with the "zh" sound of "azure, measure", because the Czech sound is roughly that simultaneously with a rolled R. Czech has this sound Ř as well as an ordinary rolled R.

Cletus the Fetus reminded me that the bilabial roll is also physically possible. This is the "brrr" sound you make with your lips when you're cold. For most of us this is paralinguistic (used for communication but not for language as such); but in recent years linguists were surprised to find it actually occurred as a normal speech sound in a few languages.

n. A sum of money; all of one's money.

v. To rob a drunken victim or one previously rendered unconscious by any means.

- american underworld dictionary - 1950

Roll (?), v. t. [imp. & p. p. Rolled (?); p. pr. & vb. n. Rolling.] [OF. roeler, roler, F. rouler, LL. rotulare, fr. L. royulus, rotula, a little wheel, dim. of rota wheel; akin to G. rad, and to Skr. ratha car, chariot. Cf. Control, Roll, n., Rotary.]


To cause to revolve by turning over and over; to move by turning on an axis; to impel forward by causing to turn over and over on a supporting surface; as, to roll a wheel, a ball, or a barrel.


To wrap round on itself; to form into a spherical or cylindrical body by causing to turn over and over; as, to roll a sheet of paper; to roll parchment; to roll clay or putty into a ball.


To bind or involve by winding, as in a bandage; to inwrap; -- often with up; as, to roll up a parcel.


To drive or impel forward with an easy motion, as of rolling; as, a river rolls its waters to the ocean.

The flood of Catholic reaction was rolled over Europe. J. A. Symonds.


To utter copiously, esp. with sounding words; to utter with a deep sound; -- often with forth, or out; as, to roll forth some one's praises; to roll out sentences.

Who roll'd the psalm to wintry skies. Tennyson.


To press or level with a roller; to spread or form with a roll, roller, or rollers; as, to roll a field; to roll paste; to roll steel rails, etc.


To move, or cause to be moved, upon, or by means of, rollers or small wheels.


To beat with rapid, continuous strokes, as a drum; to sound a roll upon.

9. Geom.

To apply (one line or surface) to another without slipping; to bring all the parts of (one line or surface) into successive contact with another, in suck manner that at every instant the parts that have been in contact are equal.


To turn over in one's mind; to revolve.

Full oft in heart he rolleth up and down The beauty of these florins new and bright. Chaucer.

<-- 11. To rob, usu. a person unable to resist, as an unconscious, drunk, or sleeping person, by removing valuables on his person; as, to roll a drunk. -->

To roll one's self, to wallow. -- To roll the eye, to direct its axis hither and thither in quick succession. -- To roll one's r's, to utter the letter r with a trill. [Colloq.]


© Webster 1913.

Roll, v. i.


To move, as a curved object may, along a surface by rotation without sliding; to revolve upon an axis; to turn over and over; as, a ball or wheel rolls on the earth; a body rolls on an inclined plane.

And her foot, look you, is fixed upon a spherical stone, which rolls, and rolls, and rolls. Shak.


To move on wheels; as, the carriage rolls along the street.

"The rolling chair."



To be wound or formed into a cylinder or ball; as, the cloth rolls unevenly; the snow rolls well.


To fall or tumble; -- with over; as, a stream rolls over a precipice.


To perform a periodical revolution; to move onward as with a revolution; as, the rolling year; ages roll away.


To turn; to move circularly.

And his red eyeballs roll with living fire. Dryden.


To move, as waves or billows, with alternate swell and depression.

What different sorrows did within thee roll. Prior.


To incline first to one side, then to the other; to rock; as, there is a great difference in ships about rolling; in a general semse, to be tossed about.

Twice ten tempestuous nights I rolled. Pope.


To turn over, or from side to side, while lying down; to wallow; as, a horse rolls.


To spread under a roller or rolling-pin; as, the paste rolls well.


To beat a drum with strokes so rapid that they can scarcely be distinguished by the ear.


To make a loud or heavy rumbling noise; as, the thunder rolls.

To roll about, to gad abroad. [Obs.]

Man shall not suffer his wife go roll about. Chaucer.


© Webster 1913.

Roll, n. [F. role a roll (in sense 3), fr. L. rotulus little wheel, LL., a roll, dim. of L. rota a wheel. See Roll, v., and cf. Role, Rouleau, Roulette.]


The act of rolling, or state of being rolled; as, the roll of a ball; the roll of waves.


That which rolls; a roller.

Specifically: (a)

A heavy cylinder used to break clods

. Mortimer. (b)

One of a set of revolving cylinders, or rollers, between which metal is pressed, formed, or smoothed, as in a rolling mill; as, to pass rails through the rolls.


That which is rolled up; as, a roll of fat, of wool, paper, cloth, etc.

Specifically: (a)

A document written on a piece of parchment, paper, or other materials which may be rolled up; a scroll.

Busy angels spread The lasting roll, recording what we say. Prior.


Hence, an official or public document; a register; a record; also, a catalogue; a list


The rolls of Parliament, the entry of the petitions, answers, and transactions in Parliament, are extant. Sir M. Hale.

The roll and list of that army doth remain. Sir J. Davies.


A quantity of cloth wound into a cylindrical form; as, a roll of carpeting; a roll of ribbon.


A cylindrical twist of tobacco



A kind of shortened raised biscuit or bread, often rolled or doubled upon itself.

5. Naut.

The oscillating movement of a vessel from side to side, in sea way, as distinguished from the alternate rise and fall of bow and stern called pitching.


A heavy, reverberatory sound; as, the roll of cannon, or of thunder.


The uniform beating of a drum with strokes so rapid as scarcely to be distinguished by the ear.


Part; office; duty; role.



Long roll Mil., a prolonged roll of the drums, as the signal of an attack by the enemy, and for the troops to arrange themselves in line. -- Master of the rolls. See under Master. -- Roll call, the act, or the time, of calling over a list names, as among soldiers. -- Rolls of court, of parliament (or of any public body), the parchments or rolls on which the acts and proceedings of that body are engrossed by the proper officer, and which constitute the records of such public body. -- To call the roll, to call off or recite a list or roll of names of persons belonging to an organization, in order to ascertain who are present or to obtain responses from those present.

Syn. -- List; schedule; catalogue; register; inventory. See List.


© Webster 1913.

Log in or register to write something here or to contact authors.