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[bob-in] /ˈbɒb ɪn/
a reel, cylinder, or spool upon which yarn or thread is wound, as used in spinning, machine sewing, lacemaking, etc.
  1. a spoollike form around which a coil of insulated wire is wound to provide an inductance.
  2. the coil itself.
Origin of bobbin
1520-30; < Middle French bobine hank of thread, perhaps bob- an expressive base akin to bob2 + -ine -ine2 Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for bobbin
  • She is a fourth-generation artist in the family tradition of bobbin lacemaking.
  • When you reach the point on the hook shank where your thread and bobbin are directly above the point of the hook, stop.
  • bobbin lace has become a rare folk art, due primarily to the tremendous amount of time required to make a single piece.
  • He was a born inventor and invented a bobbin that saved thousands of dollars per year in the manufacturing of cloth.
British Dictionary definitions for bobbin


a spool or reel on which thread or yarn is wound, being unwound as required; spool; reel
narrow braid or cord used as binding or for trimming
a device consisting of a short bar and a length of string, used to control a wooden door latch
  1. a spool on which insulated wire is wound to form the coil of a small electromagnetic device, such as a bell or buzzer
  2. the coil of such a spool
(pl) (Brit, slang) matter that is worthless or of inferior quality; rubbish
Word Origin
C16: from Old French bobine, of unknown origin
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for bobbin

1520s, from French bobine, small instrument used in sewing or tapestry-making, perhaps from Latin balbus (see babble (v.)) for the stuttering, stammering noise it made.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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