noun, plural wreaths [reethz, reeths] .
a circular band of flowers, foliage, or any ornamental work, for adorning the head or for any decorative purpose; a garland or chaplet.
any ringlike, curving, or curling mass or formation: a wreath of clouds.
a curved section of a handrail.
Also called wreathpiece. a curved section of a string.
verb (used with object), verb (used without object)
to wreathe.

before 1000; Middle English wrethe, Old English writha something wound or coiled; akin to writhe

wreathlike, adjective

wraith, wreath, wreathe, writhe.
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verb (used with object), wreathed; wreathed or (Archaic) wreathen; wreathing.
to encircle or adorn with or as with a wreath.
to form as a wreath by twisting or twining.
to surround in curving or curling masses or form.
to envelop: a face wreathed in smiles.
verb (used without object), wreathed; wreathed or (Archaic) wreathen; wreathing.
to take the form of a wreath or wreaths.
to move in curving or curling masses, as smoke.

1520–30; earlier wrethe, partly v. use of wreath, partly back formation from wrethen, obsolete past participle of writhe

wreather, noun
interwreathe, verb, interwreathed, interwreathing.

wraith, wreath, wreathe, writhe.
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Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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World English Dictionary
wreath (riːθ)
n , pl wreaths
1.  a band of flowers or foliage intertwined into a ring, usually placed on a grave as a memorial or worn on the head as a garland or a mark of honour
2.  any circular or spiral band or formation
3.  a spiral or circular defect appearing in porcelain and glassware
[Old English wrǣth, wrǣd; related to Middle Low German wrēden to twist. See writhe]

wreathe (riːð)
1.  to form into or take the form of a wreath by intertwining or twisting together
2.  (tr) to decorate, crown, or encircle with wreaths
3.  to move or cause to move in a twisting way: smoke wreathed up to the ceiling
[C16: perhaps back formation from wrēthen, from Old English writhen, past participle of wrīthan to writhe; see wreath]

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009
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Word Origin & History

O.E. wriða "fillet, bandage, band" (lit. that which is wound around), from P.Gmc. *writhon (cf. O.N. riða, Dan. vride, O.H.G. ridan "to turn, twist," O.S., O.Fris. wreth "angry," Du. wreed "rough, harsh, cruel," O.H.G. reid "twisted," O.N. reiða "angry"), from PIE *wreit- "to turn, bend"
(cf. O.E. wriða "band," wriðan "to twist, torture," wraþ "angry"), from base *wer- "to turn, bend" (see versus). Meaning "ring or garland of flowers" is first recorded 1563.

1530, a back-formation from wrethen, M.E. pp. of writhe.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Example sentences
We played on weekends, too, sometimes at tables wreathed in marijuana smoke.
The mayor had a handlebar moustache and a wide, brutal face, which was wreathed
  in cigarette smoke.
Wreathed in ice fog, the ice shelf takes on the haziness of a mirage.
The forests were on fire- they however wreathed their necks with their hands.
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