- any of several relatively small masses of air rotating rapidly around a more or less vertical axis and advancing simultaneously over land or sea, as a dust devil, tornado, or waterspout.
- anything resembling a whirlwind, as in violent action or destructive force.
- any circling rush or violent onward course.
- like a whirlwind, as in speed or force: a whirlwind visit to New York.
- to move or travel quickly.
- reap the whirlwind, to suffer the penalties for one's misdeeds. Hos. 8:7.
Origin of whirlwind
1300–50; Middle English < Old Norse hvirfilvindr; cognate with German Wirbelwind
SynonymsSee more synonyms on Thesaurus.com
4. headlong, breakneck, hasty, impulsive.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018
Examples from the Web for whirlwind
He talks about a whirlwind weekend-long affair with a man he met at a club in Berlin.Choose Your Own Neil Patrick Harris: The Star on ‘Doogie,’ ‘Gone Girl,’ Gay Sex and More
October 10, 2014
Well known for his inability to say no to worthy causes, Palmer has always been a whirlwind of good works.Will the Real Jim Palmer Please Stand Up
September 27, 2014
After a whirlwind romance, Sarkozy quickly married Bruni in February 2008.Francois Hollande Announces Breakup with First Lady Valerie Trierweiler
January 26, 2014
Later that month he was making his first whirlwind foreign trip to identify countries that might be willing to take detainees.Congress Cooperates, Obama Pushes Hard, and Closing Gitmo Has a Chance
December 12, 2013
This year has been a whirlwind for Kate Bosworth—featuring a new movie, new design collaboration, and even a new husband.Kate Bosworth Is Back and Crazy in Love
November 5, 2013
And an angel still rides in the whirlwind and directs this storm.
It mingled with my dreams, and made them full of storm and whirlwind.Other Tales and Sketches
The rush and blows passed with the fury of a whirlwind, and the swiftness of lightning.
The onset and the issue were like the passage and destruction of a whirlwind.
Out of the south cometh the whirlwind, and cold out of the north.The Works of Whittier, Volume V (of VII)
John Greenleaf Whittier
- a column of air whirling around and towards a more or less vertical axis of low pressure, which moves along the land or ocean surface
- a motion or course resembling this, esp in rapidity
- (as modifier)a whirlwind romance
- an impetuously active person
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
Word Origin and History for whirlwind
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper