display | more...

Whirl"wind` (?), n. [Cf. Icel. hvirfilvindr, Sw. hvirfvelvind, Dan. hvirvelvind, G. wirbelwind. See Whirl, and Wind, n.]


A violent windstorm of limited extent, as the tornado, characterized by an inward spiral motion of the air with an upward current in the center; a vortex of air. It usually has a rapid progressive motion.

The swift dark whirlwind that uproots the woods. And drowns the villages. Bryant.

⇒ Some meteorologists apply the word whirlwind to the larger rotary storm also, such as cyclones.


Fig.: A body of objects sweeping violently onward.

"The whirlwind of hounds and hunters."



© Webster 1913.

Log in or register to write something here or to contact authors.