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SPIKE, n.2

A species of lavender. – Hill.

SPIKE, v.t.

  1. To fasten with spikes or long and large nails; as, to spike down the planks of a floor or bridge.
  2. To set with spikes. A youth leaping over the spiked pales … was caught by the spikes. [ Unusual.] – Wiseman.
  3. To stop the vent with spikes; as, to spike cannon.

SPIK'ED, pp.

Furnished with spikes, as corn; fastened with spikes; stopped with spikes.


The Lavandula spica.


In botany, a small spike making a part of a large one; or a subdivision of a spike. – Barton.

SPIKE'NARD, n. [spik'nard; L. spica nardi.]

  1. A vague popular name applied to numerous widely different plants. In the United States it is applied to Aralia racemosa; in England, to Andropogon Nardus of India; to Valeriana spica; and to several species of Baccharis, Conyza, &c.
  2. A name of various fragrant essential oils.

SPIK'ING, ppr.

Fastening with spikes; stopping with large nails.

SPIK'Y, a.

Having a sharp point. – Dyer.

SPILE, n. [D. spil, a pivot, a spindle; G. spille; Ir. spile; W. ebill, from the root of L. pilus, pilum, &c.]

  1. A small peg or wooden pin, used to stop a hole.
  2. A stake driven into the ground to protect a bank, &c.

SPILL, n. [a different orthography of Spile, supra.]

  1. A small peg or pin for stopping a cask; as, a vent hole; stopped with a spill. – Mortimer.
  2. A little bar or pin of iron. – Carew.
  3. A little sum of money. [Not in use.] – Ayliffe.

SPILL, v.i.

  1. To waste; to be prodigal. [Not in use.]
  2. To be shed; to be suffered to fall, be lost or wasted. He was so topfull of himself, that he let it spill on all the company. – Watts.

SPILL, v.t. [pret. spilled or spilt; pp. id. (Sax. spillan; D. and G. spillen; Sw. spilla; Dan. spilder.)]

  1. To suffer to fall or run out of a vessel; to lose or suffer to be scattered; applied only to fluids and to substances whose particles are small and loose. Thus we spill water from a pail; we spill spirit or oil from a bottle; we spill quicksilver or powders from a vessel or a paper; we spill sand or flour. Spill differs from pour in expressing accidental loss; a loss or waste not designed, or contrary to purpose.
  2. To suffer to be shed; as, a man spills his own blood.
  3. To cause to flow out or lose; to shed; as, a man spills another's blood. [This is applied to cases of murder or other homicide, but not to venesection. In the latter case we say, to let or take blood.] And to revenge his blood so justly spilt. – Dryden.
  4. To mischief; to destroy; as, to spill the mind or soul; to spill glory; to spill forms, &c. [This application is obsolete and now improper.]
  5. To throw away. – Tickel.
  6. In seamen's language, to discharge the wind out of the cavity or belly of a sail. – Mar. Dict.


Suffered to fall, as liquids; shed.


  1. One that spills or sheds.
  2. A kind of fishing-line. – Carew.


Suffering to fall or run out, as liquids; shedding. Spilling-lines, in a ship, are ropes for furling, more conveniently the square sails. – Mar. Dict.

SPILT, v. [pret. and pp. of Spill.]

SPILTH, n. [from spill.]

Any thing spilt. [Not in use.] – Shak.

SPIN, v.i.

  1. To practice spinning; to work at drawing and twisting threads; as, the woman knows how to spin. They neither know to spin, nor care to toil. – Prior.
  2. To perform the act of drawing and twisting threads; as, a machine or jenny spins with great exactness.
  3. To move round rapidly; to whirl; as, a top or a spindle.
  4. To stream or issue in a thread or small current; as, blood spins from a vein. – Drayton.

SPIN, v.t. [pret. and pp. spun. Span is not used. Sax. spinnan; Goth. spinnan; D. and G. spinnen; Dan. spinder; Sw. spinna. If the sense is to draw out or extend, this coincides in origin with span.]

  1. To draw out and twist into threads, either by the hand or machinery; as, to spin wool, cotton or flax; to spin goats' hair. All the yarn which Penelope spun in Ulysses' absence, did but fill Ithaca with moths. – Shak.
  2. To draw out tediously; to form by a slow process or by degrees; with out; as, to spin out large volumes on a subject.
  3. To extend to a great length; as, to spin out a subject.
  4. To draw out; to protract; to spend by delays; as, to spin out the day in idleness. By one delay after another, they spin out their whole lives. – L'Estrange.
  5. To whirl with a thread; to turn or cause to whirl; as, to spin a top.
  6. To draw out from the stomach in a filament; as, a spider spins a web. To spin hay, in military language, is to twist it into ropes for convenient carriage on an expedition.

SPIN'ACH, or SPIN'AGE, n. [L. spinacia; It. spinace; Sp. espinaca; Fr. epinards; D. spinagie; G. spinat; Pers. spanach.]

A plant of the genus Spinacia.

SPI'NAL, a. [See Spine.]

Pertaining to the spine or back bone of an animal; as, the spinal cord; spinal muscles; spinal arteries. – Arbuthnot. Encyc.

SPIN'DLE, n. [from spin; Sax. and Dan. spindel.]

  1. The pin used in spinning wheels for twisting the thread and on which the thread when twisted is wound. – Bacon.
  2. A slender pointed rod or pin on which any thing turns; as, the spindle of a vane.
  3. The fusee of a watch.
  4. A long slender stalk. – Mortimer.
  5. The lower end of a capstan, shod with iron; the pivot. – Mar. Dict.

SPIN'DLE, v.i.

To shoot or grow in a long slender stalk or body. Bacon. Mortimer.


A tall slender person; in contempt.


Having long slender legs.