whirl·​wind | \ ˈhwər(-ə)l-ˌwind How to pronounce whirlwind (audio) , ˈwər(-ə)l-\

Definition of whirlwind

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a small rotating windstorm of limited extent
2a : a confused rush : whirl a whirlwind of meetings
b : a violent or destructive force or agency



Definition of whirlwind (Entry 2 of 2)

: resembling a whirlwind especially in speed or force a whirlwind campaign a whirlwind romance

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Examples of whirlwind in a Sentence


My life has been a whirlwind lately. He attended a whirlwind of meetings.


The band went on a whirlwind concert tour. They were married after a whirlwind romance. We continued on at a whirlwind pace.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

The legislation was one of several bills that moved through the Oregon Senate during a whirlwind session that saw scores of other laws passed as Republicans returned to the upper chamber after a nine-day walkout. oregonlive.com, "Oregon Legislature passes bill to more reliably catch, penalize educators who engage in sexual misconduct," 1 July 2019 Wolfgang Puck and Barbara Lazaroff opened it in 1983, a year after their whirlwind Spago debut. Patricia Escárcega, latimes.com, "Beyond Spago, exploring Wolfgang Puck’s L.A. empire at Cut and Chinois on Main," 27 June 2019 The blocky, percussive track -- a highlight at his recent Coachella showing -- is made for rumbling through dark dancefloors, propelled into euphoria by whirlwind loops of chanting voices. Billboard Staff, Billboard, "The 32 Best Dance Songs of 2019 (So Far): Staff Picks," 27 June 2019 It's been a whirlwind month for Jaclyn Hill, who has been dealing with backlash after launching her eponymous makeup brand. Thatiana Diaz, refinery29.com, "Jaclyn Hill Is Giving Every Person Who Bought Her Lipstick A Refund," 25 June 2019 The whirlwind first few days in the organization are over, and Dach can start focusing on prospect development camp in July and then training camp in September. Jimmy Greenfield, chicagotribune.com, "‘Everything was about hockey’: From Edmonton to Saskatoon to Chicago, Blackhawks top pick Kirby Dach never stopped thinking about the sport," 24 June 2019 June 23, 201912:07 But the whirlwind weekend of nearly all-candidate cattle calls in South Carolina offered a real test for Biden. NBC News, "Biden's soft spots exposed, but Democratic rivals strike only glancing blows," 24 June 2019 McDaniel, who shot 1-under par in Thursday’s first round at TPC River Highlands, qualified for the tournament Monday after a whirlwind 24 hours that began in Pebble Beach, Calif., and ended 3,000 miles away in Ellington, Conn. Alex Putterman, courant.com, "Monday qualifier Chip McDaniel seizing opportunity at Travelers after red-eye flight, timely McDonald’s run," 20 June 2019 Sheen captivated the class and their family members with a whirlwind address that challenged the stadium’s closed captioning to keep up. Nico Savidge, The Mercury News, "Actor Martin Sheen channels ‘West Wing’ president Josiah Bartlet in Santa Clara graduation speech," 15 June 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective

Cristobal has only been in his new job for a little while, part of a whirlwind few weeks that saw Willie Taggart leave for Florida State and the Ducks prepare for (and then lose) the Las Vegas Bowl to Boise State. Brian Pedersen, ajc, "What Oregon coach Mario Cristobal said about Ducks’ early signees," 20 Dec. 2017 Rihanna, the ultimate multi-tasking queen, capped off her whirlwind New York Fashion Week with a bang on Thursday night. Paul Chi, Vanities, "Inside Rihanna’s Diamond Ball, Where Beyoncé and Jay-Z Danced to Calvin Harris and Barack Obama Sent His Regards," 15 Sep. 2017 Rihanna, the ultimate multi-tasking queen, capped off her whirlwind New York Fashion Week with a bang on Thursday night. Paul Chi, vanityfair.com, "Inside Rihanna’s Diamond Ball, Where Beyoncé and Jay-Z Danced to Calvin Harris and Barack Obama Sent His Regards," 15 Sep. 2017 But there is something about sandwiches, their versatility and their portability that can’t be beat during these whirlwind summer months. Chelsea Zwieg, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Layered for summer: Farmers market pickings fill seasonal sandwiches," 25 July 2017

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


14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1


1614, in the meaning defined above

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Dictionary Entries near whirlwind

whirlpool bath







Statistics for whirlwind

Last Updated

11 Jul 2019

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Time Traveler for whirlwind

The first known use of whirlwind was in the 14th century

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More Definitions for whirlwind



English Language Learners Definition of whirlwind

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a very strong wind that moves in a spinning or swirling motion and that can damage buildings, trees, etc.
: something that involves many quickly changing events, feelings, etc.



English Language Learners Definition of whirlwind (Entry 2 of 2)

: happening or done very quickly


whirl·​wind | \ ˈhwərl-ˌwind How to pronounce whirlwind (audio) , ˈwərl-\

Kids Definition of whirlwind

: a small windstorm of rapidly rotating air

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More from Merriam-Webster on whirlwind

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with whirlwind

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for whirlwind

Spanish Central: Translation of whirlwind

Nglish: Translation of whirlwind for Spanish Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about whirlwind

Comments on whirlwind

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characterized by aphorism

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