See also: Spoon


English Wikipedia has an article on:
A table spoon
A fishing spoon
A hand grenade with spoon (lever) at right


Etymology 1Edit

From Middle English spoon, spoune, spone, spon (spoon, chip of wood), from Old English spōn (sliver, chip of wood, shaving), from Proto-Germanic *spēnuz (chip, flake, shaving), from Proto-Indo-European *(s)peh₂- (chip, shaving, log, length of wood).

Cognate with Scots spun, spon (spoon, shingle), West Frisian spoen, Dutch spaan (chip, flinders), German Span (chip, flake, shaving), Faroese spónur (wood chip; spoon), Ancient Greek σφήν (sphḗn, wedge). Eclipsed non-native Middle English cuculer and Middle English coclear (spoon) both ultimately borrowed from the Latin.

The "unit of energy" semse was coined by writer, speaker and lupus patient advocate Christine Miserandino in 2003.


spoon (plural spoons)

  1. An implement for eating or serving; a scooped utensil whose long handle is straight, in contrast to a ladle.
  2. An implement for stirring food while being prepared; a wooden spoon.
  3. A measure that will fit into a spoon; a spoonful.
  4. (golf, archaic) A wooden-headed golf club with moderate loft, similar to the modern three wood.
  5. (slang) An oar.
    • 1877, The Country (volumes 1-2, page 339)
      To this class college rowing offers no attractions or place, nor are they generally looked upon by the artists of the "spoons" as a desirable addition []
  6. (fishing) A type of metal lure resembling the concave head of a tablespoon.
  7. (dentistry, informal) A spoon excavator.
  8. (figuratively, slang, archaic) A simpleton, a spooney.
    • 1872, George Eliot, Middlemarch, Chapter 23
      To get all the advantages of being with men of this sort, you must know how to draw your inferences and not be a spoon who takes things literally.
  9. (US, military) A safety handle on a hand grenade, a trigger.
  10. (slang) A metaphoric unit of energy available for daily activities.
    • 2015, Jenny Lawson, Furiously Happy: A Funny Book About Horrible Things[1], page 241:
      You work, and play, and clean, and love, and hate, and that's lots of damn spoons . . . but if you are young and healthy you still have spoons left over as you fall asleep and wait for the new supply of spoons to be delivered in the morning.
    • 2016, Tymber Dalton, Two Against Nature, page 86:
      Once you're out of spoons for the day, that's it, no more energy. So when you get down to your last couple of spoons for the day, you have to decide, what's the priority?
    • 2018, Donna Alward, Nancy Cassidy, Adulting 101: Writing Through Life and Other Adventures[2]:
      But if you're running low on spoons, take some time out to recharge.
    • 2018, Dennis J. DeWitt, Zoe Died. What Now?: Finding Hope in Times of Loss[3]:
      He has frequent dizzy spells. His friend has Asperger syndrome. Both relate and support each other when they have run out of spoons.
Derived termsEdit


spoon (third-person singular simple present spoons, present participle spooning, simple past and past participle spooned)

  1. To serve using a spoon; to transfer (something) with a spoon.
    Sarah spooned some apple sauce onto her plate.
    • 1958, Anthony Burgess, The Enemy in the Blanket (The Malayan Trilogy), published 1972, page 365:
      Talbot champed away, finally spooning in resignation with the tinned fruit salad, calm of mind reached with the last piece of cheese, all passion spent in the third drained coffee-cup.
  2. (intransitive, dated) To flirt; to make advances; to court, to interact romantically or amorously.
  3. (transitive or intransitive, informal, of persons) To lie nestled front-to-back, following the contours of the bodies, in a manner reminiscent of stacked spoons.
    • 1905 "If the Man in the Moon were a Coon"
      No roaming 'round the park at night / No spooning in the bright moonlight
  4. (tennis, golf, croquet) To hit (the ball) weakly, pushing it with a lifting motion, instead of striking with an audible knock.
    • 2012 June 28, Jamie Jackson, “Wimbledon 2012: Lukas Rosol shocked by miracle win over Rafael Nadal”, in the Guardian[4]:
      Rosol spurned the chance to finish off a shallow second serve by spooning into the net, and a wild forehand took the set to 5-4, with the native of Prerov required to hold his serve for victory.
  5. (intransitive) To fish with a concave spoon bait.
  6. (transitive) To catch by fishing with a concave spoon bait.
Derived termsEdit

See alsoEdit

Etymology 2Edit

Origin uncertain. Compare spoom.


spoon (third-person singular simple present spoons, present participle spooning, simple past and past participle spooned)

  1. Alternative form of spoom
Derived termsEdit


Middle EnglishEdit



  1. Alternative form of spone