What is the meaning of "romped away" in the following sentence

Chester hugged his mother and romped away. "I love you, too," he seemed to say.


Does "Chester hugged his mother and romped away" mean "Chester hugged his mother and ran away" ?

If so, what is the difference in the meaning between "romped away" and "ran away" ?

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    Have you lookup up the meaning of to romp? – Mick Nov 24 '17 at 9:29
  • in my dictionary, the meaning of "romp away" is "to make progress, increase or win quickly and easily", and the meaning of "romp" is "When children or animals romp, they play noisily and happily." – user22046 Nov 24 '17 at 9:35
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    The second meaning sounds more likely: he ran away noisily and happily. The author is using one verb to provide a more nuanced meaning for another, but I don't know what this is called. – Mick Nov 24 '17 at 9:45
  • If so, does "romp away" mean "play away" ? does "Chester hugged his mother and played away" mean "Chester hugged his mother and ran away nosily and happily" ? – user22046 Nov 24 '17 at 9:58
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    Romp and play (and run) have different meanings. Romp is being substituted for run to provide a different meaning, and the implication is that the child ran away, noisily and happily. It is a common (but rather lazy) literary device. – Mick Nov 24 '17 at 10:14

Romp means to run or play happily or boisterously.

away there has the locative sense, departing, moving farther and farther from a place.

P.S. away can also mean to do something continuously without interruption, to be engaged in doing something.

He snored away.

She puttered away in her pottery shed.

He strummed away on a banjo while the infant in its crib cried itself to sleep.

A romp is an easy victory.

They romped over the other team.

But nowadays we (speakers of AmE) don't say "the football team romped away". Your dictionary is in error there if it defines "romp away" as "to win quickly and easily" in contemporary American English, where it was used 100 years ago, when college students were wearing raccoon coats.

  • In British-english saying a team or player "romped away with it", to mean they won easily, is in common use, at least journalistically. – Greg Nov 24 '17 at 21:10
  • It's something not heard in AmE nowadays—at least I've never heard it spoken, and I've been romping on the planet for a while—though "romp" is common enough, most often as a noun. "It was a romp, with Harvard defeating Yale 30-3." I watch a good deal of English Premier League football, and I don't recall hearing it there—maybe none of the games has been a true romp. How badly does one team have to defeat the other before "romp away" is used? – Tᴚoɯɐuo Nov 24 '17 at 22:57
  • Ngrams shows little use of "romp away" compared to "romp through", which is the other phrasal verb shown in OALD for romp. – laugh Nov 25 '17 at 21:33

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