1

spell

play
verb \ˈspel\

Definition of spell

spelled

play play \ˈspeld, ˈspelt\;

spelling

  1. transitive verb
  2. 1 :  to read slowly and with difficulty —often used with out

  3. 2 :  to find out by study :  come to understand —often used with out it requires some pains to spell out those decorations — F. J. Mather

  4. 3a (1) :  to name the letters of in order; also :  to write or print the letters of in order (2) :  to write or print the letters of in a particular wayb :  to make up (a word) what word do these letters spellc :  write 1b catnip is spelled as one word

  5. 4 :  to add up to :  mean crop failure was likely to spell stark famine — Stringfellow Barr

  6. intransitive verb
  7. :  to form words with letters teach children to spell; also :  to spell words in a certain way spells the way he speaks

Origin and Etymology of spell

Middle English, to mean, signify, read by spelling out letters, from Anglo-French espeleir, of Germanic origin; akin to Old English spellian to relate, spell talk


2

spell

noun

Definition of spell

  1. 1a :  a spoken word or form of words held to have magic powerb :  a state of enchantment

  2. 2 :  a strong compelling influence or attraction

Origin and Etymology of spell

Middle English, talk, tale, from Old English; akin to Old High German spel talk, tale


3

spell

play
verb \ˈspel\

Definition of spell

spelled

play \ˈspeld\;

spelling

  1. transitive verb
  2. :  to put under a spell

First Known Use of spell

circa 1623


4

spell

noun

Definition of spell

  1. 1a archaic :  a shift of workersb :  one's turn at work

  2. 2a :  a period spent in a job or occupationb chiefly Australia :  a period of rest from work, activity, or use

  3. 3a :  an indeterminate period of time waited a spell before advancing; also :  a continuous period of time did a spell in prisonb :  a stretch of a specified type of weather

  4. 4 :  a period of bodily or mental distress or disorder a spell of coughing fainting spells

Origin and Etymology of spell

probably alteration of Middle English spale substitute, from Old English spala


5

spell

verb

Definition of spell

spelled

play \ˈspeld\;

spelling

  1. transitive verb
  2. 1 :  to take the place of for a time :  relieve we spell each other every two hours

  3. 2 :  rest

  4. intransitive verb
  5. 1 :  to work in turns

  6. 2 chiefly Australia :  to rest from an activity for a time

Origin and Etymology of spell

Middle English spelen, from Old English spelian; akin to Old English spala substitute



SPELL Defined for Kids

1

spell

play
verb \ˈspel\

Definition of spell for Students

spelled

;

spelling

  1. 1 :  to name, write, or print in order the letters of a word

  2. 2 :  to make up the letters of C-A-T spells the word “cat.”

  3. 3 :  to have (such) a spelling My name is Lynne spelled with an E.

  4. 4 :  to amount to :  mean Another drought would spell famine.


2

spell

play
noun

Definition of spell for Students

  1. 1 :  a spoken word or group of words believed to have magic power :  charm

  2. 2 :  a very strong influence Their talking broke the music's spell.


3

spell

play
noun

Definition of spell for Students

  1. 1 :  a short period of time Come and sit a spell.

  2. 2 :  a stretch of a specified kind of weather a dry spell a warm spell

  3. 3 :  a period of bodily or mental distress or disorder fainting spells

  4. 4 :  a person's turn at work or duty

  5. 5 :  a period spent in a job or occupation After a spell of teaching, she went back to sales.


4

spell

play
verb

Definition of spell for Students

spelled

;

spelling

  1. :  to take the place of for a time :  relieve spell a person at shoveling Grandma … took the paddle out of her hand. “I'll spell you, Wilma.” — Richard Peck, A Year Down Yonder


Medical Dictionary

spell

play
noun \ˈspel\

Medical Definition of spell

  1. :  a period of bodily or mental distress or disorder a spell of coughing fainting spells



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