(1)   A light, self-propelled movement upwards or forwards
(2)   A metal elastic device that returns to its shape or position when pushed or pulled or pressed
"The spring was broken"
(3)   The elasticity of something that can be stretched and returns to its original length
(4)   A point at which water issues forth
(5)   A natural flow of ground water
(6)   The season of growth
"The emerging buds were a sure sign of spring"
"He will hold office until the spring of next year"


(7)   Develop suddenly
"The tire sprang a leak"
(8)   Produce or disclose suddenly or unexpectedly
"He sprang these news on me just as I was leaving"
(9)   Spring back; spring away from an impact
"The rubber ball bounced"
"These particles do not resile but they unite after they collide"
(10)   Move forward by leaps and bounds
"The horse bounded across the meadow"
"The child leapt across the puddle"
"Can you jump over the fence?"
(11)   Develop into a distinctive entity
"Our plans began to take shape"



Sense of ‘season’ 1547, from earlier springing time, spring-time, in sense of buds sprouting or “spring” up. This replaced Old English by the 14th century.

Sense of ‘source of water’ attested circa 1225.


  1. To start to exist.
    Sometimes the ideas spring to life fully formed.
  2. To jump or leap.
    He sprang up from his seat.
  3. To release or set free, especially from prison.


: be born, come into being, come into existence: bound, jump, leap: free, let out, release, spring loose

Related terms


  1. Traditionally the first of the four seasons of the year in temperate regions, in which plants spring from the ground and trees come into blossom, following winter and preceding summer.
  2. Meteorologically, the months of March, April and May in the northern hemisphere (or September, October and November in the southern).
  3. The astronomically delineated period from the moment of vernal equinox, approximately March 20 in the northern hemisphere (September 22 in the southern), to the moment of the summer solstice, approximately June 21 (December 22).
  4. Spring tide; a tide of greater-than-average range, that is, around the first or third quarter of a lunar month, or around the times of the new or full moon.
  5. A place where water emerges from the ground.
  6. The property of a body of springing to its original form after being compressed, stretched, etc.
  7. A mechanical device made of flexible or coiled material that exerts force when it is bent, compressed or stretched.
  8. A rope attaching the bow of a vessel to the stern-side of the jetty, or vice versa, to stop the vessel from swaying.
  9. An erection of the penis.
  10. The source of an action
    • 1748. David Hume. Enquiries concerning the human understanding and concerning the principles of moral. London: Oxford University Press, 1973, § 9.
      ... discover, at least in some degree, the secret springs and principles, by which the human mind is actuated in its operations?


: fount, source: bounce, bounciness, elasticity, resilience, springiness: boner, chubby, hard-on, stiffy, woody; see also "erection" in WikiSaurus: impetus, impulse

Related terms

  • springboc, springbock
  • springbok
  • springe
  • spring-haas, springhaas
  • springhalt
  • springle