- spread [spred]vt.spread, spreading [ME spreden < OE sprædan, akin to Ger spreiten < IE * sprei-d-, to sprinkle, strew < base * (s)p(h)er-, to strew, spray, burst (of buds) > SPRAY1, SPRAWL, SPROUT]1. to draw out so as to display more fully; open or stretch out so as to cover more space; unfold or unfurl2. to lay out in display; exhibit3. to move apart (the fingers, arms, legs, wings, etc.)4.a) to distribute over a surface or area; scatter; disperseb) to distribute among a group [to spread the wealth]c) to distribute in a thin layer; smear [to spread butter on toast]d) to cover by smearing (with something) [to spread bread with jelly]5. to extend or prolong in time [to spread payments over a two-year period]6. to cause to be widely or more widely known, felt, existent, etc.; disseminate; propagate; diffuse [to spread news, a disease, etc.]7. to cover, overlay, or deck (with something)8.a) to set (a table) for a mealb) to set (food) on a table9. to push apart or farther apart☆ 10. to record in full; enter (on a record)11. to flatten out (a rivet, etc.) by hammeringvi.1. to extend itself; be extended or expanded2. to become distributed or dispersed3. to be made widely or more widely known, felt, existent, etc.; be disseminated, propagated, or diffused4. to be pushed apart or farther apart5. to be of such consistency that it can be distributed in a thin layer, as butter; be capable of being smearedn.1. the act of spreading; extension; expansion; diffusion2.a) the extent to which something is spread or can be spreadb) the interval or difference between the highest and lowest figures of a set, as of the scores of a testc) the difference between related prices, rates, etc., as that between the prices at which a broker buys and sells shares of a stockd) in betting, the number of points by which a team, esp. a football team, is expected to defeat its opponent3. an expanse; extent; stretch; compass4.☆ a) two facing pages of a newspaper, magazine, etc., treated as a single continuous sheet, as in advertisingb) printed matter set across a page, or across several columns, of a newspaper, magazine, etc.☆ 5. a cloth cover for a table, bed, etc.☆ 6. any soft substance, as jam, butter, etc., used for spreading on bread7. Informal a meal, esp. one with a wide variety of food8. Informal a pretentious display☆ 9. a ranch, or any large farm or estate——————☆ spread oneself thinto try to do too many things at once
English World dictionary. V. Neufeldt. 2014.