verb \ˈspil\

: to cause or allow (something) to fall, flow, or run over the edge of a container usually in an accidental way

: to fall or flow over the edge of a container

: to move or spread out into a wider place or area

spilled \ˈspild, ˈspilt\ also spilt \ˈspilt\ spill·ing

Full Definition of SPILL

transitive verb
a archaic :  kill, destroy
b :  to cause (blood) to be lost by wounding
:  to cause or allow especially accidentally or unintentionally to fall, flow, or run out so as to be lost or wasted
a :  to relieve (a sail) from the pressure of the wind so as to reef or furl it
b :  to relieve the pressure of (wind) on a sail by coming about or by adjusting the sail with lines
:  to throw off or out <a horse spilled him>
:  to let out :  divulge <spill a secret>
intransitive verb
a :  to flow, run, or fall out, over, or off and become wasted, scattered, or lost <water spilling over the dam>
b :  to cause or allow something to spill
:  to spread profusely or beyond bounds <crowds spilled into the streets>
:  to fall from one's place (as on a horse)
spill·able \ˈspi-lə-bəl\ adjective
spill·er noun
spill one's guts
:  to divulge especially personal information
spill the beans
:  to divulge secret or hidden information

Examples of SPILL

  1. I accidentally spilled coffee all over my new suit.
  2. Clean up the flour you spilled on the floor.
  3. a puddle of spilled water
  4. Water spilled over the dam.
  5. She opened the door and light spilled into the room.
  6. an interviewer who gets celebrities to spill their secrets
  7. Come on, spill it. Who gave you the money?

Origin of SPILL

Middle English, from Old English spillan; akin to Old English spildan to destroy and perhaps to Latin spolium animal skin, Greek sphallein to cause to fall
First Known Use: before 12th century



Definition of SPILL

:  the act or an instance of spilling; especially :  a fall from a horse or vehicle or an erect position
:  something spilled

First Known Use of SPILL

circa 1845



Definition of SPILL

:  a wooden splinter
:  a small roll or twist of paper or slip of wood for lighting a fire

Origin of SPILL

Middle English spille; akin to Middle Low German spīle thin stick, peg
First Known Use: 14th century


Next Word in the Dictionary: spillagePrevious Word in the Dictionary: spiliteAll Words Near: spill
May 25, 2015
callithump Hear it
a noisy boisterous band or parade
Take a 3-minute break and test your skills!
How to use a word that (literally) drives some people nuts.
Test your vocab with our fun, fast game
Ailurophobia, and 9 other unusual fears