1. Positioned with the arms and legs stretched out.
2. Informal Full of patriotic or jingoistic rhetoric.
v. spread-ea·gled, spread-ea·gling, spread-ea·gles
To place in a spread-eagle position, especially as a means of punishment.
1. To assume a spread-eagle position.
2. To make a grandiloquent, patriotic speech.
The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition copyright ©2022 by HarperCollins Publishers. All rights reserved.
Indo-European & Semitic Roots Appendices
Thousands of entries in the dictionary include etymologies that trace their origins back to reconstructed proto-languages. You can obtain more information about these forms in our online appendices:
The Indo-European appendix covers nearly half of the Indo-European roots that have left their mark on English words. A more complete treatment of Indo-European roots and the English words derived from them is available in our Dictionary of Indo-European Roots.