Etymology: Middle English spinnen, from Old English spinnan; akin to Old High German spinnan to spin and perhaps to Lithuanian spęsti to set (a trap)
Date: before 12th century
1. to draw out and twist fiber into yarn or thread
2. to form a thread by extruding a viscous rapidly hardening fluid — used especially of a spider or insect
a. to revolve rapidly ; gyrate
b. to feel as if in a whirl ; reel <my head is spinning> 4. to move swiftly especially on or as if on wheels or in a vehicle 5. to fish with spinning bait ; troll 6. a. of an airplane to fall in a spin b. to plunge helplessly and out of control 7. to engage in spin control (as in politics) transitive verb 1. a. to draw out and twist into yarns or threads b. to produce by drawing out and twisting a fibrous material 2. to form (as a web or cocoon) by spinning 3. a. to stretch out or extend (as a story) lengthily ; protract — usually used with out b. to evolve, express, or fabricate by processes of mind or imagination <spin a yarn> 4. to cause to whirl ; impart spin to <spin a top> 5. to shape into threadlike form in manufacture; also to manufacture by a whirling process 6. to set (records or compact discs) rotating on a player ; play <spin some discs> 7. to present (as information) with a particular spin <spin the statistics> II. noun Date: 1831 1. a. the act of spinning or twirling something; also an instance of spinning or of spinning something <doing axels and spins> <an assortment of spins and lobs> b. the whirling motion imparted (as to a ball or top) by spinning c. an excursion or ride in a vehicle especially on wheels <go for a spin> 2. a. an aerial maneuver or flight condition consisting of a combination of roll and yaw with the longitudinal axis of the airplane inclined steeply downward b. a plunging descent or downward spiral c. a state of mental confusion <all in a spin> 3. a. a quantum characteristic of an elementary particle that is visualized as the rotation of the particle on its axis and that is responsible for measurable angular momentum and magnetic moment b. the angular momentum associated with such rotation whose magnitude is quantized and which may assume either of two possible directions; also the angular momentum of a system of such particles derived from the spins and orbital motions of the particles 4. a. a usually ingenious twist <puts an Asian spin on the pasta dishes> b. (1) a special point of view, emphasis, or interpretation presented for the purpose of influencing opinion <put the most favorable spin on the findings> (2) spin control • spinless adjective
New Collegiate Dictionary. 2001.