What does spawn mean?

Definitions for spawn

This dictionary definitions page includes all the possible meanings, example usage and translations of the word spawn.

Princeton's WordNet

  1. spawnverb

    the mass of eggs deposited by fish or amphibians or molluscs

  2. engender, breed, spawnverb

    call forth

  3. spawnverb

    lay spawn

    "The salmon swims upstream to spawn"


  1. spawnnoun

    The numerous eggs of an aquatic organism

  2. spawnnoun

    Mushroom mycelium prepared for (aided) propagation

  3. spawnnoun

    (by extension) Any germ or seed, even a figurative source; offspring

  4. spawnnoun

    The location in a game where characters or objects spontaneously appear.

  5. spawnverb

    To produce or deposit (eggs) in water.

  6. spawnverb

    To generate, bring into being, especially non-mammalian beings in very large numbers.

  7. spawnverb

    To bring forth in general.

  8. spawnverb

    To induce (aquatic organisms) to spawn

  9. spawnverb

    To plant with fungal spawn

  10. spawnverb

    To deposit (numerous) eggs in water.

  11. spawnverb

    To reproduce, especially in large numbers.

  12. spawnverb

    (To cause) to appear spontaneously in a game at a certain point and time.

  13. Etymology: Recorded since 1413; from spawne, spawnen, from espaundre, from espandre, from expandere.

Samuel Johnson's Dictionary

  1. Spawnnoun

    Etymology: spene, spenne, Dutch.

    Masters of the people,
    Your multiplying spawn how can he flatter
    That’s thousand to one good one? William Shakespeare, Coriolanus.

    God said, let the waters generate
    Reptile, with spawn abundant, living soul! John Milton.

    These ponds, in spawning time abounded with frogs, and a great deal of spawn. John Ray, on the Creation.

    ’Twas not the spawn of such as these
    That dy’d with Punick blood the conquer’d seas,
    And quasht the stern Æacides. Wentworth Dillon.

    This atheistical humour was the spawn of the gross superstitions of the Romish church and court. John Tillotson.

  2. To Spawnverb

    Etymology: from the noun.

    Some report a sea-maid spawn’d him. William Shakespeare.

    What practices such principles as these may spawn, when they are laid out to the sun, you may determine. Jonathan Swift.

  3. To Spawnverb

    It is so ill a quality, and the mother of so many ill ones that spawn from it, that a child should be brought up in the greatest abhorrence of it. John Locke.


  1. SPAWN

    SPAWN, the Salmon Protection and Watershed Network, is a project of the Turtle Island Restoration Network (TIRN), a United States 501(c)(3) nonprofit environmental organization. SPAWN's stated mission is to "protect endangered salmon in the Lagunitas Creek Watershed and the environment on which we all depend." SPAWN uses a multi-faceted approach to accomplish their mission including grassroots action, habitat restoration, policy development, research and monitoring, citizen training, environmental education, strategic litigation, and collaboration with other organizations and agencies.


  1. spawn

    Spawn refers to the process through which a new life or entity is produced, either through reproductive methods in terms of organisms or through the creation of characters or objects in video games. The term may also refer to the offspring produced through such processes.

Webster Dictionary

  1. Spawnverb

    to produce or deposit (eggs), as fishes or frogs do

  2. Spawnverb

    to bring forth; to generate; -- used in contempt

  3. Spawnverb

    to deposit eggs, as fish or frogs do

  4. Spawnverb

    to issue, as offspring; -- used contemptuously

  5. Spawnverb

    the ova, or eggs, of fishes, oysters, and other aquatic animals

  6. Spawnverb

    any product or offspring; -- used contemptuously

  7. Spawnverb

    the buds or branches produced from underground stems

  8. Spawnverb

    the white fibrous matter forming the matrix from which fungi

  9. Etymology: [OE. spanen, OF. espandre, properly, to shed, spread, L. expandere to spread out. See Expand.]


  1. Spawn

    Spawn is a fictional character, a comic book superhero who appears in a monthly comic book of the same name published by Image Comics. Created by writer/artist Todd McFarlane, the character first appeared in Malibu Sun #13. Spawn was ranked 60th on Wizard magazine's list of the Top 200 Comic Book Characters of All Time, 50th on Empire magazine's list of The 50 Greatest Comic Book Characters and 36th on IGN's 2011 Top 100 Comic Book Heroes. The series has spun off several other comics, including Angela, Curse of the Spawn, Sam & Twitch, and the Japanese manga Shadows of Spawn. Spawn was adapted into a 1997 feature film, an HBO animated series lasting from 1997 until 1999, and a series of action figures whose high level of detail made McFarlane Toys known in the toy industry.

Chambers 20th Century Dictionary

  1. Spawn

    spawn, n. the eggs of fish or frogs when ejected: offspring.—adj. containing spawn.—v.t. to produce, as fishes and frogs do their eggs: to bring forth.—v.i. to deposit eggs, as fishes or frogs: to issue, as offspring.—ns. Spawn′er, the female fish from which the spawn is ejected; Spawn′ing; Spawn′ing-bed, -ground, a bed made in the bottom of a stream on which fish deposit their spawn. [O. Fr. espandre, to shed—L. expandĕre, to spread out.]

The New Hacker's Dictionary

  1. spawn

    1. [techspeak] In Unix parlance, to create a child process from within a process. Technically this is a ‘fork’; the term ‘spawn’ is a bit more general and is used for threads (lightweight processes) as well as traditional heavyweight processes. 2. In gaming, meant to indicate where (spawn-point) and when a player comes to life (or re-spawns) after being killed. Opposite of frag.

Editors Contribution

  1. spawn

    The eggs of various aquatic animals

    Jellyfish, frogs and other marine animals produce spawn.

    Submitted by MaryC on February 4, 2017  

Surnames Frequency by Census Records

  1. SPAWN

    According to the U.S. Census Bureau, Spawn is ranked #79075 in terms of the most common surnames in America.

    The Spawn surname appeared 241 times in the 2010 census and if you were to sample 100,000 people in the United States, approximately 0 would have the surname Spawn.

    91.2% or 220 total occurrences were White.
    3.7% or 9 total occurrences were of Hispanic origin.
    2.9% or 7 total occurrences were Black.

Matched Categories

How to pronounce spawn?

How to say spawn in sign language?


  1. Chaldean Numerology

    The numerical value of spawn in Chaldean Numerology is: 5

  2. Pythagorean Numerology

    The numerical value of spawn in Pythagorean Numerology is: 1

Examples of spawn in a Sentence

  1. Michael Milstein:

    There are some indications that large numbers of sardines did spawn successfully last year, but we won’t know what difference that makes until those juvenile fish survive for a few more years.

  2. Whitney Way Thore:

    Fat-shaming is a thing ; it's a really big thing, no pun intended, it is the really nasty spawn of a larger parent problem called body-shaming, which I'm fairly certain everyone on the planet, especially women, has experienced.

  3. Erik Pevernagie:

    When the mind is burdened voluntary silence can spawn release and wellness. It has the power to create spiritness and space for imagination. It can lead to a reviving retreat into a world with new perspectives.

  4. Inga Saffron:

    The difference being they were catching the sturgeon as they were migrating to spawn, not only did they kill the fish, they killed future generations of fish.

  5. Robert King:

    I think we knew [it would spawn conversation], for the most part, you know when you’re not going for a straight, down-the-middle happy ending that there are going to be people who have strong points of view about it.

Popularity rank by frequency of use


Translations for spawn

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"spawn." Definitions.net. STANDS4 LLC, 2023. Web. 29 Sep. 2023. <https://www.definitions.net/definition/spawn>.

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    joint that forms a corner; usually both sides are bevelled at a 45-degree angle to form a 90-degree corner
    • A. flair
    • B. mitre
    • C. tingle
    • D. muddle

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