[ furl ]
/ fɜrl /
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verb (used with object)
to gather into a compact roll and bind securely, as a sail against a spar or a flag against its staff.
verb (used without object)
to become furled.
the act of furling.
something furled, as a roll.
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Idioms about furl
furl in a body, Nautical. to furl (a square sail) with loose canvas gathered at the mast, so as to make a harbor furl.
furl in the bunt, Nautical. to furl (a square sail) by gathering canvas upward, so as to load the yard equally at all points.
Origin of furl
1550–60; compare Middle French ferler in same sense, perhaps representing Old French ferlier to chain, fasten, equivalent to fer firm (<Latin firmus) + lier to bind (<Latin ligāre)
OTHER WORDS FROM furlfurl·a·ble, adjectivefurler, noun
Other definitions for furl (2 of 2)
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023
How to use furl in a sentence
Once, when it was rather gusty weather, all hands were wanted, and the skipper ordered him to furl a sail.Eric, or Little by Little|Frederic W. Farrar
He instantly gave orders to furl the awning, and to be ready to make sail as soon as the breeze should reach us.Peter the Whaler|W.H.G. Kingston
He leaped upon the house and helped Dolph and Otie furl the mainsail that lay sprawled in the lazy-jaeks.Blow The Man Down|Holman Day
It was my duty to furl the fore-royal; and while standing by to loose it again, I had a fine view of the scene.Is Shakespeare Dead?|Mark Twain
Mr Nott now took the helm, while the crew went aloft to furl the lighter canvas and to take a reef in the topsails.True Blue|W.H.G. Kingston
British Dictionary definitions for furl
/ (fɜːl) /
to roll up (an umbrella, a flag, etc) neatly and securely or (of an umbrella, flag, etc) to be rolled up in this way
(tr) nautical to gather in (a square sail)
the act or an instance of furling
a single rolled-up section
Derived forms of furlfurlable, adjectivefurler, noun
Word Origin for furl
C16: from Old French ferlier to bind tightly, from ferm tight (from Latin firmus firm 1) + lier to tie, bind, from Latin ligāre
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