spire

1
[ spahyuh r ]
/ spaɪər /

noun

a tall, acutely pointed pyramidal roof or rooflike construction upon a tower, roof, etc.
a similar construction forming the upper part of a steeple.
a tapering, pointed part of something; a tall, sharp-pointed summit, peak, or the like: the distant spires of the mountains.
the highest point or summit of something: the spire of a hill; the spire of one's profession.
a sprout or shoot of a plant, as an acrospire of grain or a blade or spear of grass.

verb (used without object), spired, spir·ing.

to shoot or rise into spirelike form; rise or extend to a height in the manner of a spire.

QUIZZES

TAKE THIS QUIZ TO SEE WHAT YOU KNOW ABOUT HIGH SCHOOL PUNCTUATION!

Commas mark divisions in sentences. Periods end declarative sentences. Apostrophes show possession. Easy, right? Well, punctuation can get pretty tricky—fast. Think you got what it takes to be a punctuation expert? Take our quiz to prove it!
Question 1 of 10
Which of the options below is the best punctuation for the sentence? It__s your turn to pick the movie __ but your sister gets to pick the board game we _ re going to play.

Origin of spire

1
before 1000; Middle English; Old English spīr spike, blade; cognate with Middle Dutch spier, Middle Low German spīr shoot, sprout, sprig, Old Norse spīra stalk

OTHER WORDS FROM spire

spire·less, adjectiveun·spir·ing, adjective

WORDS THAT MAY BE CONFUSED WITH spire

spire steeple

Definition for spire (2 of 2)

spire2
[ spahyuh r ]
/ spaɪər /

noun

a coil or spiral.
one of the series of convolutions of a coil or spiral.
Zoology. the upper, convoluted part of a spiral shell, above the aperture.

Origin of spire

2
1565–75; < Latin spīra < Greek speîra; see spiral

OTHER WORDS FROM spire

spire·less, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2020

Example sentences from the Web for spire

British Dictionary definitions for spire (1 of 2)

spire1
/ (spaɪə) /

noun

Also called: steeple a tall structure that tapers upwards to a point, esp one on a tower or roof or one that forms the upper part of a steeple
a slender tapering shoot or stem, such as a blade of grass
the apical part of any tapering formation; summit

verb

(intr) to assume the shape of a spire; point up
(tr) to furnish with a spire or spires

Derived forms of spire

spiry, adjective

Word Origin for spire

Old English spīr blade; related to Old Norse spīra stalk, Middle Low German spīr shoot, Latin spīna thorn

British Dictionary definitions for spire (2 of 2)

spire2
/ (spaɪə) /

noun

any of the coils or turns in a spiral structure
the apical part of a spiral shell

Derived forms of spire

spiriferous (spaɪəˈrɪfərəs), adjective

Word Origin for spire

C16: from Latin spīra a coil, from Greek speira
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