Webster's Dictionary, 1913

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Sprightly adjective [ Compar. Sprightlier ; superl. Sprightliest .] [ See Sprite .] Sprightlike, or spiritlike; lively; brisk; animated; vigorous; airy; gay; as, a sprightly youth; a sprightly air; a sprightly dance. " Sprightly wit and love inspires." Dryden.

The sprightly Sylvia trips along the green.
Pope.

Sprigtail noun (Zoology) (a) The pintail duck; -- called also sprig , and spreet-tail . [ Local, U.S.] (b) The sharp-tailed grouse. [ Local, U.S.]

Spring intransitive verb [ imperfect Sprang or Sprung ; past participle Sprung ; present participle & verbal noun Springing .] [ Anglo-Saxon springan ; akin to D. & German springen , Old Saxon & Old High German springan , Icelandic & Swedish springa , Danish springe ; confer Greek ... to hasten. Confer Springe , Sprinkle .]


1. To leap; to bound; to jump.

The mountain stag that springs
From height to height, and bounds along the plains.
Philips.

2. To issue with speed and violence; to move with activity; to dart; to shoot.

And sudden light
Sprung through the vaulted roof.
Dryden.

3. To start or rise suddenly, as from a covert.

Watchful as fowlers when their game will spring .
Otway.

4. To fly back; as, a bow, when bent, springs back by its elastic power.

5. To bend from a straight direction or plane surface; to become warped; as, a piece of timber, or a plank, sometimes springs in seasoning.

6. To shoot up, out, or forth; to come to the light; to begin to appear; to emerge; as a plant from its seed, as streams from their source, and the like; -often followed by up , forth , or out .

Till well nigh the day began to spring .
Chaucer.

To satisfy the desolate and waste ground, and to cause the bud of the tender herb to spring forth.
Job xxxviii. 27.

Do not blast my springing hopes.
Rowe.

O, spring to light; auspicious Babe, be born.
Pope.

7. To issue or proceed, as from a parent or ancestor; to result, as from a cause, motive, reason, or principle.

[ They found] new hope to spring
Out of despair, joy, but with fear yet linked.
Milton.

8. To grow; to prosper.

What makes all this, but Jupiter the king,
At whose command we perish, and we spring ?
Dryden.

To spring at , to leap toward; to attempt to reach by a leap. -- To spring forth , to leap out; to rush out. -- To spring in , to rush in; to enter with a leap or in haste. -- To spring on or upon , to leap on; to rush on with haste or violence; to assault.

Spring transitive verb
1. To cause to spring up; to start or rouse, as game; to cause to rise from the earth, or from a covert; as, to spring a pheasant.

2. To produce or disclose suddenly or unexpectedly.

She starts, and leaves her bed, amd springs a light.
Dryden.

The friends to the cause sprang a new project.
Swift.

3. To cause to explode; as, to spring a mine.

4. To crack or split; to bend or strain so as to weaken; as, to spring a mast or a yard.

5. To cause to close suddenly, as the parts of a trap operated by a spring; as, to spring a trap.

6. To bend by force, as something stiff or strong; to force or put by bending, as a beam into its sockets, and allowing it to straighten when in place; -- often with in , out , etc.; as, to spring in a slat or a bar.

7. To pass over by leaping; as, to spring a fence.

To spring a butt (Nautical) , to loosen the end of a plank in a ship's bottom. -- To spring a leak (Nautical) , to begin to leak. -- To spring an arch (Architecture) , to build an arch; -- a common term among masons; as, to spring an arch over a lintel. -- To spring a rattle , to cause a rattle to sound. See Watchman's rattle , under Watchman . -- To spring the luff (Nautical) , to ease the helm, and sail nearer to the wind than before; -- said of a vessel. Mar. Dict. -- To spring a mast or spar (Nautical) , to strain it so that it is unserviceable.

Spring noun [ Anglo-Saxon spring a fountain, a leap. See Spring , intransitive verb ]
1. A leap; a bound; a jump.

The prisoner, with a spring , from prison broke.
Dryden.

2. A flying back; the resilience of a body recovering its former state by elasticity; as, the spring of a bow.

3. Elastic power or force.

Heavens! what a spring was in his arm!
Dryden.

4. An elastic body of any kind, as steel, India rubber, tough wood, or compressed air, used for various mechanical purposes, as receiving and imparting power, diminishing concussion, regulating motion, measuring weight or other force.

» The principal varieties of springs used in mechanisms are the spiral spring (Fig. a ), the coil spring (Fig. b ), the elliptic spring (Fig. c ), the half- elliptic spring (Fig. d ), the volute spring , the India-rubber spring , the atmospheric spring , etc.

5. Any source of supply; especially, the source from which a stream proceeds; as issue of water from the earth; a natural fountain. "All my springs are in thee." Ps. lxxxvii. 7. "A secret spring of spiritual joy." Bentley. "The sacred spring whence and honor streams." Sir J. Davies.

6. Any active power; that by which action, or motion, is produced or propagated; cause; origin; motive.

Our author shuns by vulgar springs to move
The hero's glory, or the virgin's love.
Pope.

7. That which springs, or is originated, from a source; as: (a) A race; lineage. [ Obsolete] Chapman. (b) A youth; a springal. [ Obsolete] Spenser. (c) A shoot; a plant; a young tree; also, a grove of trees; woodland. [ Obsolete] Spenser. Milton.

8. That which causes one to spring; specifically, a lively tune. [ Obsolete] Beau. & Fl.

9. The season of the year when plants begin to vegetate and grow; the vernal season, usually comprehending the months of March, April, and May, in the middle latitudes north of the equator. "The green lap of the new-come spring ." Shak.

» Spring of the astronomical year begins with the vernal equinox, about March 21st, and ends with the summer solstice, about June 21st.

10. The time of growth and progress; early portion; first stage. "The spring of the day." 1 Sam. ix. 26.

O how this spring of love resembleth
The uncertain glory of an April day.
Shak.

11. (Nautical) (a) A crack or fissure in a mast or yard, running obliquely or transversely. (b) A line led from a vessel's quarter to her cable so that by tightening or slacking it she can be made to lie in any desired position; a line led diagonally from the bow or stern of a vessel to some point upon the wharf to which she is moored.

Air spring , Boiling spring , etc. See under Air , Boiling , etc. -- Spring back (Bookbinding) , a back with a curved piece of thin sheet iron or of stiff pasteboard fastened to the inside, the effect of which is to make the leaves of a book thus bound (as a ledger or other account or blank book) spring up and lie flat. -- Spring balance , a contrivance for measuring weight or force by the elasticity of a spiral spring of steel. -- Spring beam , a beam that supports the side of a paddle box. See Paddle beam , under Paddle , noun -- Spring beauty . (a) (Botany) Any plant of the genus Claytonia , delicate herbs with somewhat fleshy leaves and pretty blossoms, appearing in springtime . (b) (Zoology) A small, elegant American butterfly ( Erora læta ) which appears in spring. The hind wings of the male are brown, bordered with deep blue; those of the female are mostly blue. -- Spring bed , a mattress, under bed, or bed bottom, in which springs, as of metal, are employed to give the required elasticity. -- Spring beetle (Zoology) , a snapping beetle; an elater. -- Spring box , the box or barrel in a watch, or other piece of mechanism, in which the spring is contained. -- Spring fly (Zoology) , a caddice fly; - - so called because it appears in the spring. -- Spring grass (Botany) , a vernal grass. See under Vernal . -- Spring gun , a firearm disharged by a spring, when this is trodden upon or is otherwise moved. -- Spring hook (Locomotive Engines) , one of the hooks which fix the driving-wheel spring to the frame. -- Spring latch , a latch that fastens with a spring. -- Spring lock , a lock that fastens with a spring. -- Spring mattress , a spring bed. -- Spring of an arch (Architecture) See Springing line of an arch , under Springing . -- Spring of pork , the lower part of a fore quarter, which is divided from the neck, and has the leg and foot without the shoulder. [ Obsolete] Nares.

Sir, pray hand the spring of pork to me.
Gayton.

-- Spring pin (Locomotive Engines) , an iron rod fitted between the springs and the axle boxes, to sustain and regulate the pressure on the axles. -- Spring rye , a kind of rye sown in the spring; -- in distinction from winter rye , sown in autumn. -- Spring stay (Nautical) , a preventer stay, to assist the regular one. R. H. Dana, Jr. -- Spring tide , the tide which happens at, or soon after, the new and the full moon, and which rises higher than common tides. See Tide . -- Spring wagon , a wagon in which springs are interposed between the body and the axles to form elastic supports. -- Spring wheat , any kind of wheat sown in the spring; -- in distinction from winter wheat , which is sown in autumn.

Spring steel A variety of steel, elastic, strong, and tough, rolled for springs, etc.

Springal noun [ Old French espringale ; of Teutonic origin, akin to English spring .] An ancient military engine for casting stones and arrows by means of a spring.

Springal, Springald Spring"all adjective [ Scot. springald , springel , from Scot. & English spring .] An active, springly young man. [ Obsolete] "There came two springals of full tender years." Spenser.

Joseph, when he was sold to Potiphar, that great man, was a fair young springall .
Latimer.

Springboard noun An elastic board, secured at the ends, or at one end, often by elastic supports, used in performing feats of agility or in exercising.

Springbok, Springbuck noun [ Dutch springbok ; springen to spring, leap + bok a he-goat, buck.] (Zoology) A South African gazelle ( Gazella euchore ) noted for its graceful form and swiftness, and for its peculiar habit of springing lighty and suddenly into the air. It has a white dorsal stripe, expanding into a broad patch of white on the rump and tail. Called also springer . [ Written also springboc , and springbock .]

Springe noun [ From Spring , intransitive verb : confer German sprenkel , Prov. English springle .] A noose fastened to an elastic body, and drawn close with a sudden spring, whereby it catches a bird or other animal; a gin; a snare.

As a woodcock to mine own springe .
Shak.

Springe transitive verb To catch in a springe; to insnare. [ R.]

Springe transitive verb [ Middle English sprengen . See Sprinkle .] To sprinkle; to scatter. [ Obsolete]

He would sowen some difficulty,
Or springen cockle in our cleane corn.
Chaucer.

Springer noun
1. One who, or that which, springs; specifically, one who rouses game.

2. A young plant. [ Obsolete] Evelyn.

3. (Architecture) (a) The impost, or point at which an arch rests upon its support, and from which it seems to spring. Hence: (b) The bottom stone of an arch, which lies on the impost. The skew back is one form of springer. (c) The rib of a groined vault, as being the solid abutment for each section of vaulting.

4. (Zoology) The grampus.

5. (Zoology) A variety of the field spaniel. See Spaniel .

6. (Zoology) A species of antelope; the sprinkbok.

Springhalt noun (Far.) A kind of lameness in horse. See Stringhalt . Shak.

Springhead noun A fountain or source.

Springiness noun The state or quality of being springly. Boyle.

Springing noun
1. The act or process of one who, or that which, springs.

2. Growth; increase; also, that which springs up; a shoot; a plant.

Thou blessest the springing thereof.
Ps. lxv. 10.

Springing line of an arch (Architecture) , the horizontal line drawn through the junction of the vertical face of the impost with the curve of the intrados; -- called also spring of an arch .

Springle noun A springe. [ Prov. Eng.]

Springlet noun A little spring.

But yet from out the little hill
Oozes the slender springlet still.
Sir W. Scott.

Springtail noun (Zoology) Any one of numerous species of small apterous insects belonging to the order Thysanura . They have two elastic caudal stylets which can be bent under the abdomen and then suddenly extended like a spring, thus enabling them to leap to a considerable distance. See Collembola , and Podura .

Springtide noun The time of spring; springtime. Thomson.

Springtime noun The season of spring; springtide.

Springy adjective [ Compar. Springier ; superl. Springiest .] [ From Spring .]
1. Resembling, having the qualities of, or pertaining to, a spring; elastic; as, springy steel; a springy step.

Though her little frame was slight, it was firm and springy .
Sir W. Scott.

2. Abounding with springs or fountains; wet; spongy; as, springy land.

Sprinkle transitive verb [ imperfect & past participle Sprinkled ; present participle & verbal noun Sprinkling .] [ Middle English sprenkelen , freq. of sprengen to sprinkle, to scatter, Anglo-Saxon sprengan , properly, to make to spring, causative of springan to spring; akin to Dutch sprenkelen to sprinkle, German sprengen . See Spring , intransitive verb , and confer Sprent .]
1. To scatter in small drops or particles, as water, seed, etc.

2. To scatter on; to disperse something over in small drops or particles; to besprinkle; as, to sprinkle the earth with water; to sprinkle a floor with sand.

3. To baptize by the application of a few drops, or a small quantity, of water; hence, to cleanse; to purify.

Having our hearts sprinkled from an evil conscience.
Hebrew x. 22.

Sprinkle intransitive verb
1. To scatter a liquid, or any fine substance, so that it may fall in particles.

And the priest shall . . . sprinkle of the oil with his finger seven times before the Lord.
Lev. xiv. 16.

2. To rain moderately, or with scattered drops falling now and then; as, it sprinkles .

3. To fly or be scattered in small drops or particles.

Sprinkle noun
1. A small quantity scattered, or sparsely distributed; a sprinkling.

2. A utensil for sprinkling; a sprinkler. [ Obsolete]

Sprinkler noun
1. One who sprinkles.

2. An instrument or vessel used in sprinkling; specifically, a watering pot.

Sprinkling noun
1. The act of one who, or that which, sprinkles.

Baptism may well enough be performed by sprinkling or effusion of water.
Ayliffe.

2. A small quantity falling in distinct drops or particles; as, a sprinkling of rain or snow.

3. Hence, a moderate number or quantity distributed like drops. Craik.

Sprint intransitive verb [ imperfect & past participle Sprinted ; present participle & verbal noun Sprinting .] [ Confer Sprunt .] To run very rapidly; to run at full speed.

A runner [ in a quarter-mile race] should be able to sprint the whole way.
Encyc. Brit.

Sprint noun The act of sprinting; a run of a short distance at full speed.

Sprint race , a foot race at the highest running speed; -- usually limited to distance under a quarter of a mile.

Sprinter noun One who sprints; one who runs in sprint races; as, a champion sprinter .

Sprit transitive verb [ Akin to German spritzen , sprützen . See Sprit , intransitive verb ] To throw out with force from a narrow orifice; to eject; to spurt out. [ Obsolete] Sir T. Browne.

Sprit intransitive verb [ Anglo-Saxon spryttan to sprout, but. See Sprout , intransitive verb , and confer Spurt , transitive verb , Sprit a spar.] To sprout; to bud; to germinate, as barley steeped for malt.

Sprit noun A shoot; a sprout. [ Obsolete] Mortimer.

Sprit noun [ Middle English spret , Anglo-Saxon spreót a sprit; spear; akin to Dutch spriet , and English sprout , sprit , v.t. & i. See Sprout , intransitive verb ] (Nautical) A small boom, pole, or spar, which crosses the sail of a boat diagonally from the mast to the upper aftmost corner, which it is used to extend and elevate.

Sprite noun [ Middle English sprit , French esprit , from Latin spiritus . See Spirit , and confer Sprightly .]
1. A spirit; a soul; a shade; also, an apparition. See Spright .

Gaping graves received the wandering, guilty sprite .
Dryden.

2. An elf; a fairy; a goblin.

3. (Zoology) The green woodpecker, or yaffle.

Spriteful adjective Sprite"ful*ly adverb , Sprite"li*ness noun ,
Spritsail noun (Nautical) (a) A sail extended by a sprit. (b) A sail formerly hung under the bowsprit, from the spritsail yard.

Sprocket noun [ Etymology uncertain.] (Machinery) (a) A tooth or projection, as on the periphery of a wheel, shaped so as to engage with a chain. (b) A sprocket wheel.

Sprocket wheel [ Etymology of sprocket is uncertain.] (Machinery) Same as Chain wheel .

Sprod noun [ Confer Gael. & Ir. bradan a salmon.] (Zoology) A salmon in its second year. [ Prov. Eng.]

Sprong obsolete imperfect of Spring . Sprung.

Sprout intransitive verb [ imperfect & past participle Sprouted ; present participle & verbal noun Sprouting .] [ Middle English sprouten , spruten ; akin to OFries. spr...ta , Anglo-Saxon spreótan , Dutch spruiten , German spriessen , Swedish spruta to squirt, to spout. Confer Sprit , transitive verb & i. , Sprit a spar, Spout , transitive verb , Spurt .]
1. To shoot, as the seed of a plant; to germinate; to push out new shoots; hence, to grow like shoots of plants.

2. To shoot into ramifications. [ Obsolete] Bacon.

Sprout transitive verb
1. To cause to sprout; as, the rain will sprout the seed.

2. To deprive of sprouts; as, to sprout potatoes.

Sprout noun [ Confer Anglo-Saxon sprote a sprout, sprig; akin to Icelandic sproti , German sprosse . See Sprout , intransitive verb ]
1. The shoot of a plant; a shoot from the seed, from the stump, or from the root or tuber, of a plant or tree; more rarely, a shoot from the stem of a plant, or the end of a branch.

2. plural Young coleworts; Brussels sprouts. Johnson.

Brussels sprouts (Botany) See under Brussels .

Spruce noun [ Middle English Spruce or Pruse , Prussia, Prussian. So named because it was first known as a native of Prussia, or because its sprouts were used for making, spruce beer . Confer Spruce beer , below, Spruce , adjective ]
1. (Botany) Any coniferous tree of the genus Picea , as the Norway spruce ( P. excelsa ), and the white and black spruces of America ( P. alba and P. nigra ), besides several others in the far Northwest. See Picea .

2. The wood or timber of the spruce tree.

3. Prussia leather; pruce. [ Obsolete]

Spruce , a sort of leather corruptly so called for Prussia leather.
E. Phillips.

Douglas spruce (Botany) , a valuable timber tree ( Pseudotsuga Douglasii ) of Northwestern America. -- Essence of spruce , a thick, dark-colored, bitterish, and acidulous liquid made by evaporating a decoction of the young branches of spruce. -- Hemlock spruce (Botany) , a graceful coniferous tree ( Tsuga Canadensis ) of North America. Its timber is valuable, and the bark is largely used in tanning leather. -- Spruce beer . [ German sprossenbier ; sprosse sprout, shoot (akin to English sprout , noun ) + bier beer. The word was changed into spruce because the beer came from Prussia (OE. Spruce ), or because it was made from the sprouts of the spruce. See Sprout , noun , Beer , and confer Spruce , noun ] A kind of beer which is tinctured or flavored with spruce, either by means of the extract or by decoction. -- Spruce grouse . (Zoology) Same as Spruce partridge , below. - - Spruce leather . See Spruce , noun , 3. -- Spruce partridge (Zoology) , a handsome American grouse ( Dendragapus Canadensis ) found in Canada and the Northern United States; -- called also Canada grouse .

Spruce adjective [ Compar. Sprucer ; superl. Sprucest ] [ Perhaps from spruce a sort of leather from Prussia, which was an article of finery. See Spruce , noun ]
1. Neat, without elegance or dignity; -- formerly applied to things with a serious meaning; now chiefly applied to persons. "Neat and spruce array." Remedy of Love.

2. Sprightly; dashing. [ Obsolete] "Now, my spruce companions." Shak.

He is so spruce that he can never be genteel.
Tatler.

Syn. -- Finical; neat; trim. See Finical .

-- Sruce"ly , adverb -- Spruce"ness , noun

Spruce transitive verb [ imperfect & past participle Spruced ; present participle & verbal noun Sprucing .] To dress with affected neatness; to trim; to make spruce.

Spruce intransitive verb To dress one's self with affected neatness; as, to spruce up.