Nearby words

  1. spatula,
  2. spatulate,
  3. spaulder,
  4. spavin,
  5. spavined,
  6. spay,
  7. spayad,
  8. spayard,
  9. spaying,
  10. spaz

Origin of spawn

1350–1400; Middle English spawnen (v.), probably < Anglo-French espaundre (Old French espandre) to expand

Related formsspawn·er, nounun·spawned, adjective Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for spawning

British Dictionary definitions for spawning


/ (spɔːn) /


the mass of eggs deposited by fish, amphibians, or molluscs
often derogatory offspring, product, or yield
botany the nontechnical name for mycelium


(of fish, amphibians, etc) to produce or deposit (eggs)
often derogatory (of people) to produce (offspring)
(tr) to produce or engender
Derived Formsspawner, noun

Word Origin for spawn

C14: from Anglo-Norman espaundre, from Old French spandre to spread out, expand

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 spawning
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

Science definitions for spawning


[ spôn ]


The eggs of water animals such as fish, amphibians, and mollusks.
Offspring produced in large numbers.


To lay eggs; produce spawn.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.