A coil is a spiral shape or a series of circles, each one inside another. You might see a coil of rope on a dock or coils of hair in a fancy hairdo.

A snake naturally curls its body into a coil, and the end of a whip after it's been cracked tends to form a coil. To move in this way is also to coil, as when your cat coils around your leg or you coil a necklace around your finger. This verb form is the earliest meaning of coil, from the Middle French coillir, "to gather," with the Latin root colligere, "to gather together."

Definitions of coil

n a round shape formed by a series of concentric circles (as formed by leaves or flower petals)

curl, curlicue, gyre, ringlet, roll, scroll, whorl
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(botany) the whorl of petals of a flower that collectively form an inner floral envelope or layer of the perianth
(botany) the whorl of sepals of a flower collectively forming the outer floral envelope or layer of the perianth enclosing and supporting the developing bud; usually green
a whorl of leaves growing around a stem
persistent enlarged calyx at base of e.g. a strawberry or raspberry
calyx composed of scales or bristles or featherlike hairs in plants of the Compositae such as thistles and dandelions
Type of:
round shape
a shape that is curved and without sharp angles

n a structure consisting of something wound in a continuous series of loops

“a coil of rope”
helix, spiral, volute, whorl
a coil of rope or wool or yarn
coils of worsted yarn
Type of:
construction, structure
a thing constructed; a complex entity constructed of many parts

n tubing that is wound in a spiral

a hollow coil that condenses by abstracting heat
Type of:
tube, tubing
conduit consisting of a long hollow object (usually cylindrical) used to hold and conduct objects or liquids or gases

n reactor consisting of a spiral of insulated wire that introduces inductance into a circuit

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coil in which voltage is induced by motion through a magnetic field
astatic coils
an arrangement of coils used in sensitive electrical instruments; the coils are arranged to give zero resultant external magnetic field when a current passes through them and to have zero electromotive force induced in them by an external magnetic field
choke, choke coil, choking coil
a coil of low resistance and high inductance used in electrical circuits to pass direct current and attenuate alternating current
field coil, field winding
the electric coil around a field magnet that produces the magneto motive force to set up the flux in an electric machine
induction coil
a coil for producing a high voltage from a low-voltage source
primary, primary coil, primary winding
coil forming the part of an electrical circuit such that changing current in it induces a current in a neighboring circuit
head, read/write head
(computer science) a tiny electromagnetic coil and metal pole used to write and read magnetic patterns on a disk
secondary, secondary coil, secondary winding
coil such that current is induced in it by passing a current through the primary coil
a coil of wire around an iron core; becomes a magnet when current passes through the coil
tickler coil
a small coil in series with the anode of a vacuum tube and coupled to the grid to provide feedback
ignition coil
an induction coil that converts current from a battery into the high-voltage current required by spark plugs
rotor, rotor coil
the rotating armature of a motor or generator
spark coil
an induction coil used to create sparks
Type of:
an electrical device used to introduce reactance into a circuit

n a contraceptive device placed inside a woman's womb

Type of:
birth control device, contraceptive, contraceptive device, preventative, preventive, prophylactic device
an agent or device intended to prevent conception

n a transformer that supplies high voltage to spark plugs in a gasoline engine

Type of:
an electrical device by which alternating current of one voltage is changed to another voltage

v wind or move in a spiral course

“the muscles and nerves of his fine drawn body were coiling for action”
“black smoke coiling up into the sky”
gyrate, spiral
Type of:
change orientation or direction, also in the abstract sense

v make without a potter's wheel

hand-build, handbuild
Type of:
forge, form, mold, mould, shape, work
make something, usually for a specific function

v wind around something in coils or loops

curl, loop
unwind or untwist
Type of:
roll, twine, wind, wrap
arrange or or coil around

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