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spread eagle

noun
1.
a representation of an eagle with outspread wings: used as an emblem of the U.S.
2.
an acrobatic figure in skating performed by making a glide with the skates touching heel-to-heel in a straight line and with the arms outstretched.
3.
an acrobatic stunt in ski jumping executed with the legs and arms widely outstretched to the sides.
Origin
1560-1570
1560-70

spread-eagle

[spred-ee-guh l] /ˈsprɛdˌi gəl/
adjective
1.
having or suggesting the form of a spread eagle.
2.
lying prone with arms and legs outstretched.
3.
boastful or bombastic, especially in the display of patriotic or nationalistic pride in the U.S.
verb (used with object), spread-eagled, spread-eagling.
4.
to stretch out (something) in the manner of a spread eagle.
verb (used without object), spread-eagled, spread-eagling.
5.
to assume the position or perform the acrobatic figure of a spread eagle:
The skater spread-eagled across the rink.
Origin
1820-30
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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British Dictionary definitions for spread eagle

spread eagle

noun
1.
the representation of an eagle with outstretched wings, used as an emblem of the US
2.
an acrobatic skating figure

spread-eagle

adjective
1.
lying or standing with arms and legs outstretched
verb
2.
to assume or cause to assume the shape of a spread eagle
3.
(intransitive) (skating) to execute a spread eagle
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 spread eagle

spread-eagle

literally "splayed eagle," 1560s, a heraldic term; the figure is that of the seal of the United States (hence spreadeagleism "extravagant laudation of the U.S.," 1858). Meaning "person secured with arms and legs stretched out" (originally to be flogged) is attested from 1785.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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9
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