The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.48:
Spin \Spin\ (sp[i^]n), v. t. [imp. & p. p. Spun(Archaic imp.
Span); p. pr. & vb. n. Spinning.] [AS. spinnan; akin to
D. & G. spinnen, Icel. & Sw. spinna, Dan. spinde, Goth.
spinnan, and probably to E. span. [root]170. Cf. Span, v.
1. To draw out, and twist into threads, either by the hand or
machinery; as, to spin wool, cotton, or flax; to spin
goat's hair; to produce by drawing out and twisting a
All the yarn she [Penelope] spun in Ulysses' absence
did but fill Ithaca full of moths. --Shak.
2. To draw out tediously; to form by a slow process, or by
degrees; to extend to a great length; -- with out; as, to
spin out large volumes on a subject.
Do you mean that story is tediously spun out?
3. To protract; to spend by delays; as, to spin out the day
By one delay after another they spin out their whole
4. To cause to turn round rapidly; to whirl; to twirl; as, to
spin a top.
5. To form (a web, a cocoon, silk, or the like) from threads
produced by the extrusion of a viscid, transparent liquid,
which hardens on coming into contact with the air; -- said
of the spider, the silkworm, etc.
6. (Mech.) To shape, as malleable sheet metal, into a hollow
form, by bending or buckling it by pressing against it
with a smooth hand tool or roller while the metal
revolves, as in a lathe.
To spin a yarn (Naut.), to tell a story, esp. a long or
To spin hay (Mil.), to twist it into ropes for convenient
carriage on an expedition.
To spin street yarn, to gad about gossiping. [Collog.]