[ too r-bil-yuh n ]
/ tʊərˈbɪl yən /


a whirlwind or something resembling a whirlwind.
a firework that rises spirally.
Horology. a frame for the escapement of a timepiece, especially a watch, geared to the going train in such a way as to rotate the escapement about once a minute in order to minimize positional error.
Compare karrusel.

Origin of tourbillion

1470–80; earlier turbilloun < Middle French to(u)rbillon < Vulgar Latin *turbiliōnem, dissimilated variant of *turbiniōnem, accusative of *turbiniō whirlwind. See turbine, -ion Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for tourbillion

British Dictionary definitions for tourbillion

/ (tʊəˈbɪljən) /


a rare word for whirlwind

Word Origin for tourbillion

C15: from French tourbillon, ultimately from Latin turbō something that spins, from turbāre to confuse
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