Etymology
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roam (v.)

c. 1300, romen, "walk, go, walk about;" early 14c., "wander about, prowl," a word of obscure origin, possibly from Old English *ramian "act of wandering about," which is probably related to aræman "arise, lift up."

There are no certain cognate forms in other Germanic languages, but Barnhart and Middle English Compendium point to Old Norse reimuðr "act of wandering about," reimast "to haunt."

"Except in late puns, there is no evidence of connexion with the Romance words denoting pilgrims or pilgrimages to Rome ...." [OED], such as Spanish romero "a pilot-fish; a pilgrim;" Old French romier "traveling as a pilgrim; a pilgrim," from Medieval Latin romerius "a pilgrim" (originally to Rome). Transitive sense is from c. 1600. Related: Roamed; roamer; roaming.

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ramble (v.)

mid-15c., ramblen, "to wander, roam about in a leisurely manner," perhaps frequentative of romen "to walk, go" (see roam), perhaps via romblen (late 14c.) "to ramble." The vowel change is perhaps by influence of Middle Dutch rammelen, a derivative of rammen "copulate," "used of the night wanderings of the amorous cat" [Weekley], or the Middle English word might be from the Dutch one. Meaning "to talk or write incoherently" is from 1630s. Related: Rambled; rambling.

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scamp (n.)
1782, "highway robber," probably from dialectal verb scamp "to roam" (1753, perhaps from 16c.), shortened from scamper. Used affectionately in sense "rascal" since 1808.
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stray (n.)
"domestic animal found wandering," early 13c., from Anglo-French noun use of Old French estraié "strayed, riderless," past-participle adjective from estraier "to roam, drift, run loose" (see stray (v.)).
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noctivagant (adj.)

"rambling or wandering in the night," 1620s, from Latin noct-, stem of nox "night" (see noct-) + vagantem (nominative vagans), present participle of vagari "to wander, stroll about, roam, be unsettled, spread abroad," from vagus "roving, wandering" (see vague). Related: Noctivagation; noctivagous.

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peregrinate (v.)

"to travel from place to place," 1590s, from Latin peregrinatus, past participle of peregrinari "to travel abroad, be alien," figuratively "to wander, roam, travel about," from peregrinus "from foreign parts, foreigner," from peregre (adv.) "abroad," properly "from abroad, found outside Roman territory," from per "away" (see per) + agri, locative of ager "field, territory, land, country" (from PIE root *agro- "field").

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aberration (n.)
Origin and meaning of aberration

1590s, "a wandering, act of straying," from Latin aberrationem (nominative aberratio) "a wandering," noun of action from past-participle stem of aberrare "to wander out of the way, lose the way, go astray," literally and figuratively, from ab "off, away from" (see ab-) + errare "to wander, stray, roam, rove" (see err). Meaning "deviation from the normal type" is attested by 1735.

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alacrity (n.)
"liveliness, briskness," mid-15c., from Latin alacritatem (nominative alacritas) "liveliness, ardor, eagerness," from alacer (genitive alacris) "cheerful, brisk, lively;" a word of uncertain origin. Perhaps cognate with Gothic aljan "zeal," Old English ellen "courage, zeal, strength," Old High German ellian. But de Vaan suggests the root sense is "to wander, roam" and a possible connection with ambulare.
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inerrant (adj.)
1650s, in reference to "fixed" stars (as opposed to "wandering" planets), from Latin inerrantem (nominative inerrans) "not wandering, fixed (of stars)," from in- "not, opposite of" (see in- (1)) + errans, present participle of errare "to wander, stray, roam, rove" (see err). Meaning "unerring, free from error" is from 1785.
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expatiate (v.)
1530s, "walk about, roam freely," from Latin expatiatus/exspatiatus, past participle of expatiari/exspatiari "wander, digress, wander from the way; spread, extend," from ex "out" (see ex-) + spatiari "to walk, spread out," from spatium (see space (n.)). Meaning "talk or write at length" is 1610s. Related: Expatiated; expatiating.
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