deasil

adverb dea·sil \ ˈdē-zəl \

Definition of deasil

: clockwise — compare widdershins

deasil was our Word of the Day on 02/18/2016. Hear the podcast!

deasil Has Scottish Gaelic Roots

According to an old custom, you can bring someone good fortune by walking around the person clockwise three times while carrying a torch or candle. In Scottish Gaelic, the word deiseil is used for the direction one walks in such a luck-bringing ritual. English speakers modified the spelling to deasil, and have used the word to describe clockwise motion in a variety of rituals.

Origin and Etymology of deasil

Scottish Gaelic deiseil, from Middle Irish dessel, from Old Irish dess right, south + sel turn; akin to Latin dexter right hand — more at dexter


Learn More about deasil


Seen and Heard

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

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!

WORD OF THE DAY

ditzy

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Find the Cousins

  • a-large-tree-with-many-branches
  • Which pair shares a common word ancestor?
Name That Thing

Test your visual vocabulary with our 10-question challenge!

TAKE THE QUIZ
Dictionary Devil

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!