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I searched the meaning of reel in a couple of dictionaries and got the meaning as

to walk, moving from side to side, looking like one is going to fall.

but still I am not able to understand it. What does it mean? Can I have an example in favor of that word?

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Wiktionary has a good entry en.wiktionary.org/wiki/reel –  user21032 May 14 '12 at 17:56
Try a learner's dictionary for examples, like OALD or Cambridge. –  aedia λ May 14 '12 at 18:46
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closed as general reference by JSBձոգչ, aedia λ, Mr. Shiny and New 安宇, Mehper C. Palavuzlar, JeffSahol May 14 '12 at 19:22

This question is too basic; it can be definitively and permanently answered by a single link to a standard internet reference source designed specifically to find that type of information.If this question can be reworded to fit the rules in the help center, please edit the question.

3 Answers

up vote 4 down vote accepted

Psalm 127:27

They reel to and fro, and stagger like a drunken man.

The definitions you found describe how someone who is drunk might walk: not in a straight line, and in danger of falling over.

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To reel in terms of walking is not commonly used (Andrew Leach's example is a good one though). What you would more often see: 'He reeled backwards from the punch' or 'The news sent him reeling' -- meaning that he appeared unsteady, as though he was about to fall over.

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A reel is a type of dance. In the Highland Reel (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Scottish_highland_dance), the dancers weave side to side and around each other in a way that the definition you provide suggests. Perhaps it comes from the dance, then?

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I should add that it is danced very quickly, giving the impression of instability. –  JAM May 14 '12 at 18:48
Or the dance from the word? –  Kris May 14 '12 at 18:48
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