from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. A machine that separates the seeds, seed hulls, and other small objects from the fibers of cotton.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. A machine used for separating cotton fibers from cotton seeds, etc.
  • n. Any mechanism that separates one person from another, whether it be distance, time, or apathy

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. a machine to separate the seeds from cotton, invented by Eli Whitney.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. A machine used in separating the seeds from cotton fibers.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • n. a machine that separates the seeds from raw cotton fibers


Sorry, no etymologies found.


  • DEAR SIR, -- The bearer hereof is Mr. Whitney at Connecticut a mechanic of the first order of ingenuity, who invented the cotton gin now so much used in the South; he is at the head of a considerable gun manufactory in Connecticut, and furnishes the U.S. with muskets undoubtedly the best they receive.


  • The energy-sucking machines involved include a cotton gin that separates the fiber from the seeds, stems, and leaves, followed by machines that bundle the fibers into bales so they can be transported elsewhere, where more machines undo the bales, fluff the cotton, and press it into sheets called laps.



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