spiel (SPEEL) listen
Schpiel (SHPEEL) listen


  • n. Play, performance, speech.

  • n. "A long, involved story or tale" (JPS); a long, drawn-out explanation or introduction.

Example Sentences

  • "She gave a whole shpiel about why we should donate money to the shul."

  • "In this year's Purim shpiel, the rabbi of the shul acted as the President, making fun of him by making him seem like Achashveirosh."

Languages of Origin

  • Yiddish
  • German


  • Yiddish שפּיל shpil, German spiel 'game, performance, play'

    • Who Uses This

      • Jews: Jews of diverse religious backgrounds and organizational involvements
      • Non-Jews: (words that have spread outside of Jewish networks)


      • North America
      • Great Britain
      • South Africa
      • Australia / New Zealand


      • The JPS Dictionary of Jewish Words, by Joyce Eisenberg and Ellen Scolnic, (Philadelphia, 2001).

      Alternative Spellings

      shpil, shpiel

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