verb (1)
\ ˈspriŋ How to pronounce spring (audio) \
sprang\ ˈspraŋ How to pronounce spring (audio) \ or sprung\ ˈsprəŋ How to pronounce spring (audio) \; sprung; springing\ ˈspriŋ-​iŋ How to pronounce spring (audio) \

Definition of spring

 (Entry 1 of 3)

intransitive verb

1a(1) : dart, shoot sparks sprang out from the fire
(2) : to be resilient or elastic also : to move by elastic force the lid sprang shut
b : to become warped
2 : to issue with speed and force or as a stream tears spring from our eyes
3a : to grow as a plant
b : to issue by birth or descent sprang from the upper class
c : to come into being : arise towns sprang up across the plains
d archaic : dawn
e : to begin to blow used with up a breeze quickly sprang up
4a : to make a leap or series of leaps springing across the lawn
b : to leap or jump up suddenly sprang from their seats
5 : to stretch out in height : rise
6 : pay used with for I'll spring for the drinks

transitive verb

1 : to cause to spring
2a : to undergo or bring about the splitting or cracking of wind sprang the mast
b : to undergo the opening of (a leak)
3a : to cause to operate suddenly spring a trap
b : to apply or insert by bending
c : to bend by force
4 : to leap over
5 : to produce or disclose suddenly or unexpectedly
6 : to make lame
7 : to release or cause to be released from confinement or custody sprung them from jail


noun, often attributive

Definition of spring (Entry 2 of 3)

1a : a source of supply especially : a source of water issuing from the ground
b : an ultimate source especially of action or motion
3 : a time or season of growth or development specifically : the season between winter and summer comprising in the northern hemisphere usually the months of March, April, and May or as reckoned astronomically extending from the March equinox to the June solstice
4 : an elastic body or device that recovers its original shape when released after being distorted
5a : the act or an instance of leaping up or forward : bound
b(1) : capacity for springing : resilience
(2) : energy, bounce
6 : the point or plane at which an arch or vault curve springs from its impost


verb (2)
sprung\ ˈsprəŋ How to pronounce spring (audio) \; springing\ ˈspriŋ-​iŋ How to pronounce spring (audio) \

Definition of spring (Entry 3 of 3)

transitive verb

: to fit with springs

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Other Words from spring


springlike \ ˈspriŋ-​ˌlīk How to pronounce spring (audio) \ adjective

Synonyms for spring

Synonyms: Noun

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Verb (1)

spring, arise, rise, originate, derive, flow, issue, emanate, proceed, stem mean to come up or out of something into existence. spring implies rapid or sudden emerging. an idea that springs to mind arise and rise may both convey the fact of coming into existence or notice but rise often stresses gradual growth or ascent. new questions have arisen slowly rose to prominence originate implies a definite source or starting point. the fire originated in the basement derive implies a prior existence in another form. the holiday derives from an ancient Roman feast flow adds to spring a suggestion of abundance or ease of inception. words flowed easily from her pen issue suggests emerging from confinement through an outlet. blood issued from the cut emanate applies to the coming of something immaterial (such as a thought) from a source. reports emanating from the capital proceed stresses place of origin, derivation, parentage, or logical cause. advice that proceeds from the best of intentions stem implies originating by dividing or branching off from something as an outgrowth or subordinate development. industries stemming from space research

Examples of spring in a Sentence

Noun We'll plant the seeds next spring. We've had a rainy spring. a beautiful day in early spring The first few weeks of spring were unusually warm. The mattress is old and some of the springs are broken. The cushion has lost its spring.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Verb Jay Bruce returned to the major leagues Saturday, making the New York Yankees’ roster at the deadline for decisions on free agents who had gone to spring training with minor league contracts. Creg Stephenson | Cstephenson@al.com, al, "White Sox-Diamondbacks 2021 MLB spring training live stream (3/28): How to watch online, TV info, time," 29 Mar. 2021 The Tigers signed Nunez to a minor-league contract this offseason with an invitation to spring training. Evan Petzold, Detroit Free Press, "Detroit Tigers set Opening Day roster: Renato Nunez out, Harold Castro, Akil Baddoo in," 27 Mar. 2021 The Pirates signed 36-year-old knuckleballer Steven Wright to a minor league contract that included an invitation to spring training. BostonGlobe.com, "The season’s getting closer, so who’s the closer, Matt Barnes or Adam Ottavino?," 21 Mar. 2021 But the real reason to spring for the AirPods Pro is the active noise-cancellation (ANC). Michael Andronico, CNN Underscored, "AirPods buying guide: Which AirPods are best for you?," 22 Feb. 2021 Nunez is a non-roster invitee to spring training and must be added to the 40-man roster. Bernie Pleskoff, Forbes, "MLB American League Central Preview: Pitching May Separate The Chicago White Sox From The Minnesota Twins," 18 Mar. 2021 The Tigers signed right-hander Wily Peralta to a minor-league contract with an invite to spring training Feb. 18, but the veteran is doubtful to make it to big-league camp. Evan Petzold, Detroit Free Press, "How Detroit Tigers' Tarik Skubal proved he is ready for the major league rotation," 18 Mar. 2021 Santana was signed to a minor league contract with an invitation to spring training. Peter Abraham, BostonGlobe.com, "Red Sox utility player Danny Santana hospitalized with infected right foot," 15 Mar. 2021 While the Dodgers signed Trevor Bauer, the reigning National League Cy Young Award winner, and Walker Buehler shined in the postseason last October, Kershaw reported to spring training as the favorite for the nod. Los Angeles Times, "Clayton Kershaw to make his ninth opening-day start for the Dodgers," 14 Mar. 2021 Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Blandino impressed in spring training, hitting line drives and showcasing his versatility. Bobby Nightengale, The Enquirer, "What to expect from every player on the Cincinnati Reds' final 26-man Opening Day roster," 1 Apr. 2021 Piazza, who flourished in New York during his Hall of Fame career, noted during spring training that Lindor has the temperament to not only succeed in the city, but to excel under its gleaming spotlight. New York Times, "Hernandez and Strawberry. Reyes and Wright. Lindor?," 31 Mar. 2021 Murakami should come to the majors sometime after the 2025 season but before spring training in 2027. Dylan Hernández Columnist, Los Angeles Times, "Column: Dodgers star Corey Seager’s MVP run and other predictions entering the MLB season," 31 Mar. 2021 While Soroka had pitched in simulated games at the Braves' spring training complex, this was his first appearance against an opposing team since his injury on Aug. 3, 2020. Paul Newberry, ajc, "Soroka returns for Braves on last day of spring training," 30 Mar. 2021 Overshown made a significant jump last offseason despite spring training being canceled due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Dallas News, "Texas offseason breakout candidates: DeMarvion Overshown is primed to be an NFL-caliber linebacker," 30 Mar. 2021 One day after news of a positive test for COVID-19 by reliever Matt Barnes shook Red Sox spring training camp, manager Alex Cora said that there had been no further positive tests in camp to this point. BostonGlobe.com, "Red Sox report no new positive COVID-19 tests after Matt Barnes tests positive, but 8 people isolated for contact tracing," 28 Mar. 2021 When Florida Atlantic wraps up spring camp with its annual scrimmage on Saturday at FAU Stadium, Willie Taggart will be swapping his coaching whistle for a commissioner’s suit. Khobi Price, sun-sentinel.com, "FAU Owls set to close out first spring camp under Willie Taggart with scrimmage — featuring two acting head coaches and fans in the stands," 26 Mar. 2021 What does the depth chart at RB look like headed into spring camp? oregonlive, "Oregon State mailbag: Beavers with NBA futures, starting five for next year, spring football is in the air," 25 Mar. 2021 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb And The Times would spring for its cost to get the interview. Ed Stockly, Los Angeles Times, "Feedback: Woody Allen’s defenders and cancel culture," 17 Mar. 2021 Those feeling spendy can spring for the $160 Japanese A5 filet kagoshima or the $125 striploin from A Bar N Ranch. Sarah Blaskovich, Dallas News, "This new restaurant has the best skyline views in Dallas," 10 Mar. 2021 As a historical sidelight, it might be noted that sometimes spring, even early spring, is and can be very warm. Washington Post, "It was winter in the morning, spring by afternoon," 21 Mar. 2021 Max takes pride in blocking and helping spring our rushing attack for big plays. oregonlive, "Meet some star Class 5A, 4A high school football players the stat sheets often miss: Beyond the Box Scores, Week 2," 19 Mar. 2021 It’s a new-look defensive coaching staff in Coral Gables as the Miami Hurricanes began spring football practices on Monday. David Furones, sun-sentinel.com, "New UM assistants Robinson, Shoop making impact; QB Tyler Van Dyke impresses early in spring," 15 Mar. 2021 Some schools say no to spring football: City Section schools had a deadline on Friday to decide whether to play football next month. Eric Sondheimer Columnist, Los Angeles Times, "Prep notebook: Birmingham’s David Diaz is about to show what multitasking looks like," 13 Mar. 2021 The hope now is that more of these objects will spring up, so they can be studied in greater detail. Quanta Magazine, "New Kind of Space Explosion Reveals the Birth of a Black Hole," 10 Mar. 2021 At the very least, the Aggies figure a late push can help them spring into next season. Brent Zwerneman, San Antonio Express-News, "Texas A&M vows it won't take SEC tournament appearance for granted," 9 Mar. 2021

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

Verb (1)

before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense 2


before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

Verb (2)

1821, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for spring

Verb (1)

Middle English, from Old English springan; akin to Old High German springan to jump and perhaps to Greek sperchesthai to hasten

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Time Traveler for spring

Time Traveler

The first known use of spring was before the 12th century

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Statistics for spring

Last Updated

2 Apr 2021

Cite this Entry

“Spring.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/spring. Accessed 11 Apr. 2021.

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More Definitions for spring



English Language Learners Definition of spring

: the season between winter and summer : the season when plants and trees begin to grow
: a twisted or coiled piece of metal that returns to its original shape when it is pressed down or stretched
: the ability of something to return to its original shape when it is pressed down, stretched, twisted, etc.


\ ˈspriŋ How to pronounce spring (audio) \
sprang\ ˈspraŋ \ or sprung\ ˈsprəŋ \; sprung; springing

Kids Definition of spring

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : to move suddenly upward or forward : leap The lion crouched, waiting to spring.
2 : to appear or grow quickly or suddenly Weeds sprang up overnight. Tears sprang from her eyes.
3 : to have (a leak) appear
4 : to move quickly by or as if by stretching and springing back The lid sprang shut.
5 : to cause to operate suddenly He was planning to spring a trap.
6 : to come into being : arise An idea sprang in his mind.



Kids Definition of spring (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : the season between winter and summer including in the northern hemisphere usually the months of March, April, and May
2 : a twisted or coiled strip of material (as metal) that recovers its original shape when it is released after being squeezed or stretched
3 : the ability of something to return to its original shape when it is compressed or stretched
4 : a source of supply (as of water coming up from the ground)
5 : the act or an instance of leaping up or forward He … caught sight of the incredible spring of a doe …— Virginia Hamilton, M. C. Higgins
6 : a bouncy or lively quality She had a spring in her step.


\ ˈspriŋ How to pronounce spring (audio) \

Medical Definition of spring

: any of various elastic orthodontic devices used especially to apply constant pressure to misaligned teeth

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Comments on spring

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