spinster

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English[edit]

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Etymology[edit]

From spin +‎ -ster, from a historical notion of unmarried women spinning thread for a living.

Pronunciation[edit]

Noun[edit]

spinster (plural spinsters)

  1. A woman who has never been married, especially one past the typical marrying age according to social traditions.
    • Coke
      If a gentlewoman be termed a spinster, she may abate the writ.
  2. One who spins (puts a spin on) a political media story so as to give something a favorable or advantageous appearance; a spin doctor, spin merchant or spin master.
  3. (obsolete) Someone whose occupation was spinning thread.
    • ~1601, William Shakespeare, Twelfth Night , act II, scene IV:
      The spinsters and the knitters in the sun.
  4. (obsolete) A woman of evil life and character; so called from being forced to spin in a house of correction.

Part or all of this entry has been imported from the 1913 edition of Webster’s Dictionary, which is now free of copyright and hence in the public domain. The imported definitions may be significantly out of date, and any more recent senses may be completely missing.

Synonyms[edit]

Translations[edit]

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Dutch[edit]

Etymology[edit]

spin (stem of spinnen) +‎ -ster

Pronunciation[edit]

Noun[edit]

spinster f (plural spinsters, diminutive spinstertje n)

  1. weaver