spi·der | \ˈspī-dər \

Definition of spider 

1a : any of an order (Araneae synonym Araneida) of arachnids having a short, usually unsegmented abdomen linked to the cephalothorax by the pedicel, chelicerae modified into poison fangs, and two or more pairs of spinnerets at the posterior end of the abdomen for spinning threads of silk for various uses (as in making cocoons for their eggs or webs to catch prey)

Note: Spiders are further characterized by leglike pedipalps near the mouth, usually eight simple eyes, and book lungs or tracheae in the abdomen.

b : any of various other arthropods and especially arachnids that resemble the true spiders not used technically

2 : a cast-iron frying pan originally made with short feet to stand among coals on the hearth

3 : any of various devices consisting of a frame or skeleton with radiating arms or members

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Other Words from spider

spiderish \ˈspī-də-rish \ adjective
spiderlike \ˈspī-dər-ˌlīk \ adjective

Examples of spider in a Sentence

We watched the spider spin its web.

Recent Examples on the Web

This particular incident is nothing compared to the scare Uecker endured in the off-season thanks to a poisonous spider bite. Jr Radcliffe, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Brewers broadcaster Bob Uecker sidelined briefly by a scratched eye," 3 July 2018 Silkworms are rare and hard to raise, and farms of spiders are generally not an appealing idea. Angela Chen, The Verge, "How scientists are engineering silk to save our bodies," 4 May 2018 Someone sprayed the apartment, but the spiders didn't go away. Danielle Garrand, CBS News, "Woman rushed to ER with brown recluse spider bites, then finds dozens more infesting her apartment," 6 July 2018 The spider is described in the journal Subterranean Biology. Jason Daley, Smithsonian, "New Spider Species Discovered In Indiana Cave," 3 July 2018 Entomologists are undecided on if the spiders' home range is expanding or if the ones found here in Michigan were brought to the state. Wzzm, Detroit Free Press, "Muskegon woman hospitalized after brown recluse spider bite," 21 June 2018 The creatures don’t have lungs or gills, so the only other explanation seemed to be that the spiders were absorbing oxygen through their skin. James Gorman, New York Times, "Breathe Deep: How the Antarctic Sea Spider Gets Oxygen," 28 May 2018 Researchers using high-speed cameras recently discovered how speedy and lethal the spiders' bite can be. Robbie Gonzalez, WIRED, "Nature’s Mechanical Secrets Could Help Build Faster Robots," 26 Apr. 2018 For a number of these competitors, such as figure skater Karen Chen and bobsledder Carlo Valdes, their biggest fears revolve around encountering the creepy crawlies—like spiders and snakes—that also spook a large part of the rest of the world. Megan Mccluskey, Time, "Let Nathan Chen, Gus Kenworthy and Nina Roth Tell You All About Their Biggest Fears," 13 Feb. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'spider.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of spider

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for spider

Middle English spyder, alteration of spithre; akin to Old English spinnan to spin

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Phrases Related to spider

spider's web

Statistics for spider

Last Updated

7 Oct 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for spider

The first known use of spider was in the 15th century

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More Definitions for spider



Financial Definition of spider

What It Is

A spider (SPDR) is an exchange-traded fund (ETF) that tracks the Standard & Poor's 500 Index. SPDR stands for S&P Depository Receipts. However, the term can also refer to any ETF that tracks the S&P 500. The original SPDR ETF is managed by State Street Global Advisors.

How It Works

A SPDR is valued at one-tenth the S&P 500 Index and trades on the American Stock Exchange at about 10% of the dollar value level of the S&P 500. Each SPDR represents a unit of ownership in a trust that holds a portfolio of stocks that track the performance and dividend yield of an index.

SPDRs trade like stocks, and like stocks, they can be shorted, purchased on margin, and pay regular dividends.

Why It Matters

SPDRs are a way for investors and institutions to invest in the broad U.S. market and bet on its direction. Like most ETFs, SPDRs offer tax advantages over actual index mutual funds in that investors have more control over capital gains distributions.

Source: Investing Answers



English Language Learners Definition of spider

: a small creature that has eight legs and usually creates a web of sticky threads in which it catches insects for food


spi·der | \ˈspī-dər \

Kids Definition of spider

1 : a wingless animal that is somewhat like an insect but has eight legs instead of six and a body divided into two parts instead of three and that often spins threads of silk into webs for catching prey

2 : a cast-iron frying pan

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spi·der | \ˈspīd-ər \

Medical Definition of spider 

1 : any of an order (Araneae synonym Araneida) of arachnids having a body with two main divisions, four pairs of walking legs, and two or more pairs of abdominal spinnerets for spinning threads of silk used especially in making webs for catching prey

2 : spider nevus an arterial spider

3 : an obstruction in the teat of a cow especially : a small irregular horny growth resulting from irritation or bruising

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Comments on spider

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