Definition of dreidel in English:


Syllabification: drei·del
Pronunciation: /ˈdrādl


North American
  • 1A small four-sided spinning top with a Hebrew letter on each side, used by the Jews.
    More example sentences
    • Schools planning ‘holiday season’ programs have been instructed to not include any icons or images in their pamphlets or concert programs that might be construed as religious symbols; for example, Christmas trees or dreidels.
    • The holidays are rich with traditions, from exchanging gifts and spinning dreidels to more personalized rituals like sharing family recipes and lending a helping hand at local shelters.
    • Sleigh bells are ringing, dreidels are spinning, and your two-week vacation is just around the corner.
  • 1.1A gambling game played with a dreidel, especially at Hanukkah.
    More example sentences
    • We celebrate Hannukah by playing dreidel - gambling, basically - for gelt, which is coin-shaped chocolate.
    • Foil-wrapped chocolate coins called Hanukkah Gelt are given as gifts and are also the prize in a children's game called dreidel.
    • We'd go over to an aunt's house, play dreidel and then on each night of Hanukkah, there'd be all the presents in the living room.


1930s: from Yiddish dreydl; compare with German drehen 'to turn'.

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