Definition of wool in English:

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Pronunciation: /wʊl/


[mass noun]
1The fine, soft curly or wavy hair forming the coat of a sheep, goat, or similar animal, especially when shorn and prepared for use in making cloth or yarn: Harris tweed is made from pure new wool
More example sentences
  • Tents and rugs are made from sheep's wool or goats' hair.
  • She was wearing a cloak made out of a Lena's fur, which was much like a sheep's wool, only finer and much softer.
  • Nomads of the desert and the high plateau live in tents woven from goat's hair, wool, and grass.
fleece, hair, coat
rare floccus
1.1Yarn or textile fibre made from wool: carpets made of 80 per cent wool and 20 per cent nylon [count noun]: a sampler in coloured wools [as modifier]: her blue wool suit
More example sentences
  • Kirby's collection has recently expanded to include classically styled trousers in Super - 120 wools and wool cashmere blends.
  • For Merino and halfbred wools, fibre diameter is the major factor that contributes to price variation as it significantly influences both fibre processing properties and ultimate product quality.
  • We must have sold millions and millions and millions of yards of navy blue cashmere or pure wools, beautiful quality fabrics, which I always did.
2A thing resembling wool, in particular:
2.1 [with modifier] The soft underfur or down of some other mammals: beaver wool
More example sentences
  • I shivered with each step taken while she glided on in a warm alpaca wool sweater resurrected from her bulkiest bag.
  • Solid-colored llama wool sweaters offer protection against the cold Andean night air.
  • For two decades poachers have slaughtered chiru by the thousands for their wool, which is finer and more expensive than cashmere.
2.2 [with modifier] A metal or mineral made into a mass of fine fibres: lead wool
More example sentences
  • All materials (cellulose Soxhlet thimbles, silica wool, vials) were cleaned with analytical grade organic solvents prior to use.
  • There are many grades of steel wool on the market today.
  • Aluminium can be keep clean with fine steel wool and plenty of soap.



pull the wool over someone's eyes

Deceive someone by telling untruths.
Example sentences
  • Being in the ‘promised land’ is obviously not all it's cracked up to be - or just maybe the board are pulling the wool over our eyes.
  • They were pulling the wool over our eyes from Day One.
  • He presents it as though he's pulling the wool over our eyes, only we are all too stupid to notice.
deceive, fool, trick, take in, hoodwink, dupe, delude
informal lead up the garden path, pull a fast one on, put one over on, bamboozle, con

wool away!

Australian /NZ A shearer’s call requesting the clearing away of a newly shorn fleece: when he finished he shouted ‘wool away’ at the top of his voice
More example sentences
  • You try to keep up with the shearers all day, and dread the moment when they shout, "Wool away".
  • If the board hand is slow and fails to clear the wool out of the shearer's way in time, the shearer will be heard to cry "wool away".
  • Even today, I sometimes long to hear the old cry "Wool away here," yelled by some angry shearer.



Example sentences
  • We believe that it may be suffering from an aphid attack as it is covered in cotton wool-like clusters which have formed on the underside of the tree's branches.
  • By comparison, rock wool, which is sometimes mistaken for vermiculite insulation because of its similar light gray to dark gray color, is thick and wool-like in appearance, as opposed to granular.
  • He wore plain dark trainers, black jeans, a white pullover and a black wool-like coat, with a navy shoulder strap bag hanging behind him.


Old English wull, of Germanic origin; related to Dutch wol and German Wolle, from an Indo-European root shared by Latin lana 'wool', vellus 'fleece'.

  • Wool is first recorded in Old English around ad 700 and can be traced back to a root shared by Latin lana ‘wool’, found in lanolin (late 19th century), literally ‘oil from wool’. The first person mentioned as trying to pull the wool over someone's eyes is an attorney, or American lawyer, in the mid 19th century, which implies that the ‘wool’ referred to is a lawyer's curly wig. The phrase may also be connected with the expression to wool someone, meaning to pull their hair or ‘wool’ as a joke or insult. Someone wild and woolly, or rough and uncouth, is so called in reference to cowboys in the Wild West who wore shaggy sheepskin garments with the wool on the outside. Woolly in the sense ‘vague or confused’ is early 19th century and draws on the idea of something woolly having a fuzzy, indistinct outline.

Words that rhyme with wool

bull, full, Istanbul, pull, push-pull

For editors and proofreaders

Line breaks: wool

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