Meaning of “reel” in the English Dictionary

"reel" in British English

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reelnoun [ C ]

uk /rɪəl/ us /rɪəl/

reelverb [ I ]

uk /rɪəl/ us /rɪəl/

to walk, moving from side to side, looking like you are going to fall:

At closing time he reeled out of the bar and fell down on the pavement.
She hit him so hard that he reeled backwards.

If the place where you are reels, what you are looking at seems to go round and round in front of you:

A stone hit his head and the street reeled before his eyes.

If you reel, or your mind or brain reels, you feel very confused or shocked and unable to act:

We were reeling (in amazement/shock/delight, etc.) from/with the news that we had won all that money.

(Definition of “reel” from the Cambridge Advanced Learner’s Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)

"reel" in American English

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reelnoun [ C ]

us /ril/

reel noun [ C ] (HOLDER)

a round or cylindrical device on which a rope, wire, film, or other long, thin strip or object is rolled, or the amount of something stored on this:

a reel of film

reelverb [ I ]

us /ril/

reel verb [ I ] (MOVE)

to move from side to side as if you are going to fall while walking or standing:

Reeling a bit, he tripped and fell.

If you reel, or your mind or brain reels, you feel very confused or shocked:

Our team is reeling from five straight losses.

(Definition of “reel” from the Cambridge Academic Content Dictionary © Cambridge University Press)

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