noun, often attributive
spill·​over | \ ˈspil-ˌō-vər \

Definition of spillover

1 : the act or an instance of spilling over
2 : a quantity that spills over
3 : an extension of something especially when an excess exists benefiting from a spillover of prosperity from neighboring states

Examples of spillover in a Sentence

Put a pan under the pie to catch any spillovers. New technology has a positive spillover effect into countless fields.

Recent Examples on the Web

China’s economic slowdown has deepened, and that will likely have spillover effects on Asia’s emerging markets. Justin Lahart, WSJ, "The One Sure Thing About Trade," 27 Dec. 2018 Other results not included in the table sometimes point to negative spillover effects on nearby areas, suggesting that enterprise zones largely rearrange the location of jobs rather than creating more of them. Matthew Yglesias, Vox, "Paul Ryan’s farewell address contained a blaze of nonsense about poverty," 20 Dec. 2018 Airlines warned the spillover effect could affect travel on Friday. Robert Wall, WSJ, "U.K. Airport Remains Closed After Drones Disrupt Travel," 20 Dec. 2018 But there are mixed results on how much spillover impact such a measure traditionally has on other races. Summer Ballentine, The Seattle Times, "Missouri Democrats hope minimum wage measure helps McCaskill," 21 Aug. 2018 The German arms export ban decision could have a spillover effect. Laurence Norman, WSJ, "Germany to Halt Arms Sales to Saudi Arabia Over Khashoggi Killing," 19 Nov. 2018 The spillover effects on this population are severe. Patrick Sisson, Curbed, "Senior housing: Older Americans face affordability, accessibility challenges," 14 Nov. 2018 Nahal Oz is no stranger to spillover violence from Gaza. Noga Tarnopolsky, latimes.com, "Condemned for Gaza shootings, Israel says it is only defending its border from 'parade of terror'," 8 May 2018 The conflict has nearly torn apart this tiny Arab nation with bouts of spillover violence and sent more than a million Syrian refugees — a quarter of Lebanon’s population — pouring across the border. Washington Post, "Lebanon votes in shadow of Syria war, reflecting divisions," 6 May 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'spillover.' 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 spillover

1940, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Statistics for spillover

Last Updated

13 Jan 2019

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Time Traveler for spillover

The first known use of spillover was in 1940

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More Definitions for spillover



English Language Learners Definition of spillover

: something that flows out of or spreads beyond a container, space, area, etc.

More from Merriam-Webster on spillover

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with spillover

Nglish: Translation of spillover for Spanish Speakers

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marked by shyness and lack of polish

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