whorl

Whorl describes something that looks like loops — a strand of curly hair that boings back up when you pull in then let it go, a corkscrew, even the track of a roller coaster that spins you in every direction.

Use whorl to describe a thing that swirls or curls — the loops of icing on a birthday cake, the spiral curves of a mountain road, or a lock of curly hair. Whorl is also a good word to describe a flower whose petals form layer after layer of circles. Don't confuse the noun whorl with its homophone whirl, a verb that means "to spin in a circle."

Definitions of whorl
  1. noun
    a round shape formed by a series of concentric circles (as formed by leaves or flower petals)
    synonyms: coil, curl, curlicue, gyre, ringlet, roll, scroll
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    types:
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    corolla
    (botany) the whorl of petals of a flower that collectively form an inner floral envelope or layer of the perianth
    calyx
    (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
    verticil
    a whorl of leaves growing around a stem
    hull
    persistent enlarged calyx at base of e.g. a strawberry or raspberry
    pappus
    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
  2. noun
    a structure consisting of something wound in a continuous series of loops
    synonyms: coil, helix, spiral, volute
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    types:
    hank
    a coil of rope or wool or yarn
    skein
    coils of worsted yarn
    type of:
    construction, structure
    a thing constructed; a complex entity constructed of many parts
  3. noun
    a strand or cluster of hair
    synonyms: curl, lock, ringlet
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    types:
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    sausage curl
    a fat sausage-shaped curl
    forelock
    a lock of hair growing (or falling) over the forehead
    crimp
    a lock of hair that has been artificially waved or curled
    dreadlock
    one of many long thin braids of hair radiating from the scalp; popularized by Rastafarians
    quiff
    a prominent forelock (especially one brushed upward from the forehead)
    pin curl
    a curl of hair made by dampening a strand of hair and curling it and holding the curl with a clip or bobby pin
    kiss curl, spit curl
    a spiral curl plastered on the forehead or cheek
    type of:
    hair
    a covering for the body (or parts of it) consisting of a dense growth of threadlike structures (as on the human head); helps to prevent heat loss
Word Family