Definition of pirn in English:


Pronunciation /pəːn/


dialect Scottish, British
  • 1A bobbin, spool, or reel; specifically (in early use) a small cylinder on which thread, etc., is bound, usually made from a hollow reed or quill; (in later use) a wood, metal, or (occasionally) paper spool designed to hold the weft yarn in the shuttle; a weaver's bobbin. Also: a bobbin or reel with yarn wound on it; a reel of thread or cotton.

  • 2Any device or object which resembles a reel or is used for winding; especially a fishing reel.


Late Middle English; earliest use found in Promptorium Parvulorum. Origin uncertain. Perhaps imitative.