• synonyms


[hel-i-kuh l, hee-li-]
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  1. pertaining to or having the form of a helix; spiral.
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Origin of helical

First recorded in 1605–15; helic- + -al1
Related formshel·i·cal·ly, adverb
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for helically

Historical Examples

  • Attached to the lower car were two helically threaded vertical rollers, working within the hollow guides.

    Elevator Systems of the Eiffel Tower, 1889

    Robert M. Vogel

  • This piece curves laterally and has a helically sloped top surface.

British Dictionary definitions for helically


  1. of or shaped like a helix; spiral
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Derived Formshelically, adverb
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 helically



"spiral-shaped," 1590s, from Latin helicem (see helix) + -al (1).

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

helically in Medicine


(hĕlĭ-kəl, hēlĭ-)
  1. Of or having the shape of a helix; spiral.
  2. Having a shape approximating that of a helix.
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The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.