How Do You Spell Spiral? – English Spelling Dictionary

Spelling of Spiral: Spiral is spelled s-p-i-r-a-l.

Definition of Spiral: Spiral describes something that winds around a center or pole and gradually recedes from or approaches it; of or relating to the advancement to higher levels through a series of cyclical movements.

A spiral is the path of something as it moves around a central point while continuously approaching or receding from it. It may also refer to a single coil or turn in a spiral object. It is also the name of any shape having a spiral form.

To spiral means to go and to rise and fall in a spiral course. As a transitive verb, spiral means to form into a spiral or to cause to spiral.

Pronunciation of Spiral: Spiral is pronounced spy-rul.

How to Use Spiral in a Sentence

What does spiral mean? Spiral can function as a noun, verb, and an adjective. Spiral has multiple meanings as a noun. It is a shape or object with one or more turns about an axis. It may also refer to a path of a point that winds around a central point continuously receding from or approaching it, or, one coil or turn in a spiral-shaped object, or, an object that has a spiral form.

how to spell spiralFor example,

  • The plane maneuvered in a wide spiral above the field full of people.
  • The receiver caught the tight spiral thrown by the quarterback.

When used as an adjective, spiral describes something that is of a spiral shape, in that there is a winding around a center point and a gradual approaching or receding from it. It also describes anything that is of or relating to the advancement of higher levels through cyclical movements.

For example,

  • To get to the top of the Statue of Liberty, you must first climb a spiral
  • As she looked up, she saw a boy holding a spiral notebook stood over her.

Spiral is often used as a verb to describe the action of going and rising and falling in a spiral course, to cause (something) to spiral, or to form into a spiral shape.

For example,

  • As his behavior started to spiral out of control, his mother no longer knew what to do.
  • Thousands stood and watched as the plane spiraled down to the ground and crashed.

Phrases & Idioms That Use Spiral

Downward spiral: a situation in which some thing(s) gets worse and worse or decreases continuously.

Spiral staircase: a set of stairs that winds around a central point.

Upward spiral: a situation in which some thing(s) gets better or increases continuously. 

History & Etymology of Spiral

Spiral was first used as an adjective in 1551, as a noun in 1656, and as a verb in 1834, according to Merriam-Webster’s.

This word comes from Medieval Latin spiralis, meaning of a spiral, which comes from Latin’s spira, meaning coil.

Synonyms for Spiral

For uses of spiral as a verb, the following synonyms may be substituted:

  • Coil
  • Corkscrew
  • Curl
  • Entwine
  • Wind
  • Twine
  • Twist

The adjective form of spiral can be replaced by the following synonyms:

  • Coiling
  • Corkscrew
  • Helical
  • Involute
  • Screwlike
  • Winding

Outside Examples of Spiral

  • The latest nuclear crisis with North Korea appeared to ease Tuesday as Pyongyang and Washington sought to lower tension before their increasingly heated threats could spiral into war. – LA Times
  • Tongs on another belt grab them and spiral them into the sky on a flight to the packaging room. – The Denver Post


Spiral can function as a verb, noun, and an adjective. Overall, it refers to an object or action that coils, or moves in series of cyclical turns or is shaped like a spiral, as a helix.