Meaning of “spin” in the English Dictionary

"spin" in English

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uk /spɪn/ us /spɪn/ present participle spinning, past tense spun, past participle UK also span

spin verb (TURN)

C1 [ I or T ] to (cause to) turn around and around, especially fast:

The earth spins on its axis.
The roulette players silently watched the wheel spin around/round.
He was killed when his car hit a tree and spun off the road.
Spin the ball (= make it turn around and around as you throw it) and it will change direction when it hits the ground.
head/room spins

If your head or the room spins, you feel as if it is turning around and around, and you cannot balance:

The room started spinning and I felt faint.

More examples

spin (sb) a story/tale/yarn

to tell a story, either to deceive someone or for entertainment:

He spun some tale about needing to take time off work because his mother was ill.
[ + two objects ] They spun us a story about being in desperate need of money.


uk /spɪn/ us /spɪn/

spin noun (TURN)

[ C or U ] the movement of something turning round very quickly:

I hit something on the road, which sent the car into a spin.
Suddenly, the plane went into a spin.
These clothes need another spin (= to be turned round very fast in a machine to get water out of them) - they're still very wet.
She put a lot of spin on the ball (= threw or hit it in a way that made it spin).


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

"spin" in American English

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us /spɪn/ present participle spinning, past tense and past participle spun /spʌn/

spin verb (TURN)

[ I/T ] to turn around and around, or to cause something or someone to turn:

[ I ] The earth spins on its axis.
[ I ] She heard footsteps behind her, and spun around to see who was there.
[ T ] The slight contact spun Joyce around.

spin verb (MAKE THREAD)

[ T ] to make thread by twisting fibers, or to produce something using thread:

Cotton is spun into thread.
Spiders spin webs.


us /spɪn/


[ U ] a particular way of representing an event or situation to the public so that it will be understood in a way that you want it to be understood:

They tried to put a positive/negative spin on the story (= They tried to make it seem better or worse), but nobody was fooled.
To understand spin, he said, is to understand that you get your story told without getting your fingerprints on it.

spin noun (TRIP)

[ C ] a short trip taken for pleasure, usually in a car:

We went for a spin in Bill’s new car.

spin noun (TURN)

[ C/U ] a fast turning movement:

[ C ] I hit a patch of ice in the road, which sent the car into a spin.

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

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