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coil 1

a. A series of connected spirals or concentric rings formed by gathering or winding: a coil of rope; long coils of hair.
b. An individual spiral or ring within such a series.
2. A spiral pipe or series of spiral pipes, as in a radiator.
3. Electricity
a. A wound spiral of two or more turns of insulated wire, used to introduce inductance into a circuit.
b. Any of various devices of which such a spiral is the major component.
4. A roll of postage stamps prepared for use in a vending machine.
v. coiled, coil·ing, coils
1. To wind in concentric rings or spirals.
2. To wind into a shape resembling a coil.
1. To form concentric rings or spirals.
2. To move in a spiral course: black smoke coiling up into the sky.

[Probably from obsolete French coillir, to gather up, from Latin colligere; see collect1.]

coil′er n.

coil 2

A disturbance; a fuss.

[Origin unknown.]


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A simple method of producing clay pots. Cylindrical strips of clay are formed from the clay body and then and then coiled on top of one another.
ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Adj.1.coiling - in the shape of a coilcoiling - in the shape of a coil    
coiled - curled or wound (especially in concentric rings or spirals); "a coiled snake ready to strike"; "the rope lay coiled on the deck"
References in classic literature ?
Even after I had pounded his ugly head flat, his body kept on coiling and winding, doubling and falling back on itself.
said Flask, coiling some spare line in the boat's bow, did you never hear that the ship which but once has a Sperm Whale's head hoisted on her starboard side, and at the same time a Right Whale's on the larboard; did you never hear, Stubb, that that ship can never afterwards capsize?
I noticed too there was a thin sulphurous scum drifting upon its coiling water.
The coiling uprush of smoke streamed across the sky, and through the rare tatters of that red canopy, remote as though they belonged to another universe, shone the little stars.
I was six months aboard a Garnsey lugger, hauling in the slack of the lee-sheet and coiling up rigging.
said Kotuko, coiling up the lash," I have a little one over the lamp that will make a great many howlings.
His voice rose very shrill and mad against the regular deep soughing of the swell coiling heavily about the outer face of the sea-wall.
Sonya was a slender little brunette with a tender look in her eyes which were veiled by long lashes, thick black plaits coiling twice round her head, and a tawny tint in her complexion and especially in the color of her slender but graceful and muscular arms and neck.
I was coiling my rope to start out in search of him, when I saw the stallion leap into view at almost the same spot behind which he had disappeared, and at his heels ran Nobs.
Hastily making one end of his rope fast to the piece of granite, he returned to the shaft, and, coiling the balance of the rope on the floor beside him, the ape-man took the heavy slab in both hands, and, swinging it several times to get the distance and the direction fixed, he let the weight fly up at a slight angle, so that, instead of falling straight back into the shaft again, it grazed the far edge, tumbling over into the court beyond.