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[spyoo] /spyu/
verb (used without object)
to discharge the contents of the stomach through the mouth; vomit.
verb (used with object)
to eject from the stomach through the mouth; vomit.
to cast forth, gush, or eject, as in disgust or anger:
The angry sergeant spewed his charges at us.
something that is spewed; vomit.
Also, spue.
before 900; Middle English spewen to vomit, cast forth foul language, Old English spīwan to vomit; cognate with German speien, Old Norse spȳja, Gothic speiwan, Latin spuere
Related forms
spewer, noun
unspewed, adjective Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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Examples for spew
  • First, different sensors tend to spew out information in different, mutually incomprehensible formats.
  • They spew hot water for the same reasons that land-based geysers do.
  • Thawing permafrost may soak up greenhouse gas before it begins to spew it out.
  • Deep in the oceans, hydrothermal vents spew superheated water full of dissolved minerals.
  • The energy crushed the capsule instantly, causing it to spew a shower of neutrons.
  • They said it would spew toxic substances and carcinogens into the air.
  • Automobiles, such as this bus seen in a file photo, spew exhaust that deposits metallic fragments on leaves.
  • Not all volcanoes spew ash and lava directly into the air or land.
  • Their nights are lit only by the gas flares atop the oil rigs, which spew out pollutants that cause acid rain.
  • Not any sooner with sites that spew wads of useless statistical data at you.
British Dictionary definitions for spew


to eject (the contents of the stomach) involuntarily through the mouth; vomit
to spit (spittle, phlegm, etc) out of the mouth
(usually foll by out) to send or be sent out in a stream flames spewed out
something ejected from the mouth
Also (archaic) spue
Derived Forms
spewer, noun
Word Origin
Old English spīwan; related to Old Norse spӯja, Gothic speiwan, Old High German spīwan, Latin spuere, Lithuanian spiauti
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 spew
O.E. spiwan "spew, spit," from P.Gmc. *spiwanan (cf. O.S. spiwan, O.N. spyja, O.Fris. spiwa, M.Du. spien, Du. spuwen, O.H.G. spiwan, Ger. speien, Goth. spiewan "to spit"), from PIE *sp(y)eu-, probably ultimately of imitative origin (cf. L. spuere, Gk. ptuein, O.C.S. pljuja, Lith. spiauti). Also in O.E. as a weak verb, speowan. The noun meaning "vomited matter" is attested from 1609.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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