The mean lift coefficient of a circular cylinder executing rotary motions in a uniform flow is investigated. These motions include steady rotation, and rotary oscillations with a net rotation rate. Results for the steadily rotating cylinder show that for a given rotation rate, larger cylinder aspect ratios yield higher lift coefficients. It was also found that the addition of forced rotary oscillations to the steady rotation of the cylinder increases the lift coefficient in the cases where the wake would normally be separated in the steadily rotating case, but decreases it otherwise. In addition, a method for estimating the mean lift of a rotating cylinder is presented. Estimates based on this method compare favourably with similar data published for steadily rotating cylinders.