noun, often attributive \ˈwl\

: the soft, thick hair of sheep and some other animals

: cloth or clothing made of wool

: long, thick thread made of wool and used for knitting

Full Definition of WOOL

:  the soft wavy or curly usually thick undercoat of various hairy mammals and especially the sheep made up of a matrix of keratin fibers and covered with minute scales
:  a product of wool; especially :  a woven fabric or garment of such fabric
a :  a dense felted pubescence especially on a plant :  tomentum
b :  a filamentous mass —usually used in combination — compare mineral wool, steel wool

Examples of WOOL

  1. She doesn't like wool because it can be itchy.
  2. <the wool from cashmere goats is considered by many to be the finest available>

Origin of WOOL

Middle English wolle, from Old English wull; akin to Old High German wolla wool, Latin vellus fleece, lana wool
First Known Use: before 12th century

Related to WOOL

Rhymes with WOOL


noun    (Concise Encyclopedia)

Animal fibre that is the protective covering, or fleece, of sheep or such other hairy mammals as goats and camels. Wool is readied by washing (lanolin is the by-product), carding, sometimes combing, then spinning. Coarser than such textile fibres as cotton, linen, silk, and rayon, wool is resilient after limited stretching or compression, so fabrics and garments made from wool tend to retain shape, drape well, and resist wrinkling. Wool is warm and lightweight and takes dyes well. Woolen yarns, usually made from shorter fibres, are thick and full and are used for such items as tweed fabrics and blankets. Worsteds usually are made from longer fibres.


Next Word in the Dictionary: woolball
Previous Word in the Dictionary: wooingly
All Words Near: wool

Seen & Heard

What made you want to look up wool? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).