[ hwurl-wind, wurl- ]
/ ˈʰwɜrlˌwɪnd, ˈwɜrl- /


any of several relatively small masses of air rotating rapidly around a more or less vertical axis and advancing simultaneously over land or sea, as a dust devil, tornado, or waterspout.
anything resembling a whirlwind, as in violent action or destructive force.
any circling rush or violent onward course.


like a whirlwind, as in speed or force: a whirlwind visit to New York.

verb (used without object)

to move or travel quickly.

Idioms for whirlwind

    reap the whirlwind, to suffer the penalties for one's misdeeds. Hos. 8:7.

Origin of whirlwind

1300–50; Middle English < Old Norse hvirfilvindr; cognate with German Wirbelwind
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2020

Examples from the Web for whirlwind

British Dictionary definitions for whirlwind

/ (ˈwɜːlˌwɪnd) /


a column of air whirling around and towards a more or less vertical axis of low pressure, which moves along the land or ocean surface
  1. a motion or course resembling this, esp in rapidity
  2. (as modifier)a whirlwind romance
an impetuously active person
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