- 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.
- to shoot or rise into spirelike form; rise or extend to a height in the manner of a spire.
Origin of spire1
Related Wordstowering, soaring, stately, imposing, magnificent, monumental, colossal, mighty, massive, prodigious, tall, gigantic, lofty, skyward, convolute, sublime, elevated, surpassing, twine, rotate
Examples from the Web for spiring
The tendency is to slender, spiring tops, while they are narrower below.The Maine Woods
Henry David Thoreau
Round and up, and ever up it went, narrowing and spiring to the zenith.Lore of Proserpine
Lovely starry night, the tall, spiring tree-tops relieved in jet black against the sky.My First Summer in the Sierra
The San Lorenzo fort was now a spiring red flame of fire—a beacon to the ships at sea.On the Spanish Main
It also chanced that I had stopped in a spot where the spiring trunks rose naked of boughs to a considerable height.A Maid of the Kentucky Hills
Edwin Carlile Litsey
- 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
- (intr) to assume the shape of a spire; point up
- (tr) to furnish with a spire or spires
- any of the coils or turns in a spiral structure
- the apical part of a spiral shell
Word Origin and History for spiring
Old English spir "sprout, shoot, stalk of grass," from Proto-Germanic *spiraz (cf. Old Norse spira "a stalk, slender tree," Middle Low German spir "a small point or top"), from PIE *spei- "sharp point" (see spike (n.1)). Meaning "tapering top of a tower or steeple" first recorded 1590s (a sense attested in Middle Low German since late 14c. and also found in the Scandinavian cognates). The verb is first recorded early 14c.