Pronunciation Verb

spread (spreads, present participle spreading; past and past participle spread)

  1. (transitive) To stretch out, open out (a material etc.) so that it more fully covers a given area of space. [from 13th c.]
    He spread his newspaper on the table.
  2. (transitive) To extend (individual rays, limbs etc.); to stretch out in varying or opposing directions. [from 13th c.]
    I spread my arms wide and welcomed him home.
  3. (transitive) To disperse, to scatter or distribute over a given area. [from 13th c.]
    I spread the rice grains evenly over the floor.
  4. (intransitive) To proliferate; to become more widely present, to be disseminated. [from 13th c.]
  5. (transitive) To disseminate; to cause to proliferate, to make (something) widely known or present. [from 14th c.]
    The missionaries quickly spread their new message across the country.
  6. (intransitive) To take up a larger area or space; to expand, be extended. [from 14th c.]
    I dropped my glass; the water spread quickly over the tiled floor.
  7. (transitive) To smear, to distribute in a thin layer. [from 16th c.]
    She liked to spread butter on her toast while it was still hot.
  8. (transitive) To cover (something) with a thin layer of some substance, as of butter. [from 16th c.]
    He always spreads his toast with peanut butter and strawberry jam.
  9. To prepare; to set and furnish with provisions.
    to spread a table
    • ?, Alfred Tennyson, The Marriage of Geraint
      Boiled the flesh, and spread the board.
  10. (intransitive, slang) To open one’s legs, especially for sexual favours. [from 20th c.]
    • 1984, Martin Amis, Money:
      This often sounds like the rap of a demented DJ: the way she moves has got to be good news, can't get loose till I feel the juice— suck and spread, bitch, yeah bounce for me baby.
    • 1991, Tori Amos, Me and a Gun:
      Yes I wore a slinky red thing. Does that mean I should spread for you, your friends, your father, Mr Ed?
    • 2003, Outkast, "Spread" (from the album Speakerboxxx/The Love Below):
      I don't want to move too fast, but / Can't resist your sexy ass / Just spread, spread for me; / (I can't, I can't wait to get you home)
Synonyms Translations Translations Translations Translations Translations Translations Translations Noun


  1. The act of spreading.
    • 1626, Francis Bacon, Sylva Sylvarum, Or, A Naturall Historie: In Ten Centuries
      No flower hath that kind of spread that the woodbine hath.
  2. Something that has been spread.
  3. (cartomancy) A layout, pattern or design of cards arranged for a reading.
  4. An expanse of land.
    • November 29, 1712, Andrew Freeport, a letter to The Spectator
      I have got a fine spread of improvable lands.
  5. A large tract of land used to raise livestock; a cattle ranch.
    • 2005, Brokeback Mountain, 00:11:50:
      - Can’t wait till I get my own spread and won’t have to put up with Joe Aguirre’s crap no more.
      - I’m savin’ for a place myself.
  6. A piece of material used as a cover (such as a bedspread).
  7. A large meal, especially one laid out on a table.
  8. (bread, etc.) Any form of food designed to be spread, such as butters or jams.
  9. (prison slang, uncountable) Food improvised by inmates from various ingredients to relieve the tedium of prison food.
    Synonyms: swole
  10. An item in a newspaper or magazine that occupies more than one column or page.
  11. Two facing pages in a book, newspaper etc.
  12. A numerical difference.
  13. (business, economics) The difference between the wholesale and retail prices.
  14. (trading, economics, finance) The difference between the price of a futures month and the price of another month of the same commodity.
  15. (trading, finance) The purchase of a futures contract of one delivery month against the sale of another futures delivery month of the same commodity.
  16. (trading, finance) The purchase of one delivery month of one commodity against the sale of that same delivery month of a different commodity.
  17. (trading) An arbitrage transaction of the same commodity in two markets, executed to take advantage of a profit from price discrepancies.
  18. (trading) The difference between bidding and asking price.
  19. (finance) The difference between the prices of two similar items.
  20. (geometry) An unlimited expanse of discontinuous points.
  21. The surface in proportion to the depth of a cut gemstone.
Synonyms Translations
  • Portuguese: espalhamento
  • Russian: распростране́ние
  • Russian: покрыва́ло
  • Italian: imbandigione
  • Russian: пи́ршество
Translations Translations
  • Russian: разворо́т
  • Russian: разворо́т

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