[spin-uh-ret, spin-uh-ret]


an organ or part by means of which a spider, insect larva, or the like spins a silky thread for its web or cocoon.
a metal plate or cup with tiny holes through which a chemical solution is extruded to form continuous filaments, as of rayon, nylon, or polyester.

Origin of spinneret

First recorded in 1820–30; spinner + -et
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for spinneret

Historical Examples of spinneret

  • The silk is stiffened with a sort of gum as it comes out of the spinneret.

    Makers of Many Things

    Eva March Tappan

  • The following are magnified figures of the spinneret of the Cossus, from Lyonnet.

  • It is at once seized in the fangs, embraced by the legs and hung on to the spinneret.

  • The labium or second maxillæ, so large in the moth, serves simply as a spinneret in the caterpillar.

    Our Common Insects

    Alpheus Spring Packard

  • When the Spider has laid her eggs, she begins to work her spinneret once more, but in a different manner.

    Insect Adventures

    J. Henri Fabre

British Dictionary definitions for spinneret



any of several organs in spiders and certain insects through which silk threads are exuded
a finely perforated dispenser through which a viscous liquid is extruded in the production of synthetic fibres

Word Origin for spinneret

C18: from spinner + -et
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 spinneret

"silk-spinning organ of a silkworm or spider," coined 1826, diminutive of spinner.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

spinneret in Science



One of the small openings in the back part of a spider or silk-producing insect larva, through which the sticky fluid that dries into silk is released.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.