Spur vs Spud - What's the difference?

spur | spud |

As nouns the difference between spur and spud

is that spur is tire marks while spud is (obsolete) a dagger.

As a verb spud is

(drilling) to begin drilling an oil well; to drill by moving the drill bit and shaft up and down, or by raising and dropping a bit.

Other Comparisons: What's the difference?



Etymology 1

From (etyl) (m).


(en noun)
  • A rigid implement, often roughly y-shaped, that is fixed to one's heel for the purpose of prodding a horse. Often worn by, and emblematic of, the cowboy or the knight.
  • * 1598 , William Shakespeare, (Henry V) , Act IV, Scene VI, line 4:
  • Lives he, good uncle? thrice within this hour I saw him down; thrice up again, and fighting; From helmet to the spur all blood he was.
  • * 1786 , Francis Grose, A Treatise on Ancient Armour and Weapons , page 22:
  • Two sorts of spurs seem to have been in use about the time of the Conquest, one called a pryck, having only a single point like the gaffle of a fighting cock; the other consisting of a number of points of considerable length, radiating from and revolving on a center, thence named the rouelle or wheel spur.
  • Anything that inspires or motivates, as a spur does to a horse.
  • * 1601 , (William Shakespeare), (Troilus and Cressida) , Act II, Scene II, line 198.
  • But, worthy Hector, She is a theme of honour and renown, A spur to valiant and magnanimous deeds...
  • An appendage or spike pointing rearward, near the foot, for instance that of a rooster.
  • Any protruding part connected at one end, for instance a highway that extends from another highway into a city.
  • Roots, tree roots.
  • * 1609 , , Act IV, Scene II, line 57:
  • I do note / That grief and patience, rooted in them both, / Mingle their spurs together.
  • * 1610 , , act 5 scene 1
  • [...] the strong-bas'd promontory
    Have I made shake; and by the spurs pluck'd up
    The pine and cedar
  • A mountain that shoots from another mountain or range and extends some distance in a lateral direction, or at right angles.
  • A spiked iron worn by seamen upon the bottom of the boot, to enable them to stand upon the carcass of a whale to strip off the blubber.
  • (carpentry) A brace strengthening a post and some connected part, such as a rafter or crossbeam; a strut.
  • (architecture) The short wooden buttress of a post.
  • (architecture) A projection from the round base of a column, occupying the angle of a square plinth upon which the base rests, or bringing the bottom bed of the base to a nearly square form. It is generally carved in leafage.
  • Ergotized rye or other grain.
  • A wall in a fortification that crosses a part of a rampart and joins to an inner wall.
  • (shipbuilding) A piece of timber fixed on the bilgeways before launching, having the upper ends bolted to the vessel's side.
  • (shipbuilding) A curved piece of timber serving as a half to support the deck where a whole beam cannot be placed.
  • Derived terms
    * spur-of-the-moment


  • To prod (especially a horse) in the side or flank, with the intent to urge motion or haste, to gig.
  • * 1592 , William Shakespeare, Richard III , Act V, Scene III, line 339:
  • Draw, archers, draw your arrows to the head! Spur your proud horses hard, and ride in blood; Amaze the welkin with your broken staves!
  • To urge or encourage to action, or to a more vigorous pursuit of an object; to incite; to stimulate; to instigate; to impel; to drive.
  • * 1599 , William Shakespeare, Twelfth Night , Act III, Scene IV, line 4.
  • My desire / (More sharp than filed steel) did spur me forth...
  • * '>citation
  • To put spurs on; as, a spurred boot.
  • Derived terms
    * spur on

    Etymology 2

    See sparrow.


    (en noun)
  • (Scotland) A sparrow.
  • A tern.
  • Etymology 3

    Short for spurious.


    (en noun)
  • A spurious tone, one that interferes with a signal in a circuit and is often masked underneath that signal.
  • spud



    (en noun)
  • (obsolete) A dagger.
  • (Holland)
  • A tool, similar to a spade, used for digging out weeds etc.
  • * 1728 , , A Pastoral Dialogue'', 1910, William Browning (editor), ''The Poems of Jonathan Swift , Volume 2, 2004, Gutenberg eBook #13621,
  • My love to Sheelah is more firmly fixt, / Than strongest weeds that grow these stones betwixt: / My spud these nettles from the stone can part; / No knife so keen to weed thee from my heart.
  • * 1885 , , After London: or Wild England , 2004 [1905], Gutenberg eBook #13944,
  • Deprived of motion by the blow of the club, it can, on the other hand, be picked up without trouble and without the aid of a dog, and if not dead is despatched by a twist of the Bushman's fingers or a thrust from his spud'. The ' spud is at once his dagger, his knife and fork, his chisel, his grub-axe, and his gouge. It is a piece of iron (rarely or never of steel, for he does not know how to harden it) about ten inches long, an inch and a half wide at the top or broadest end, where it is shaped and sharpened like a chisel, only with the edge not straight but sloping, and from thence tapering to a point at the other, the pointed part being four-sided, like a nail.
  • * 1925 , , 2008, Arrow Books, page 19,
  • A most respectable old Johnnie, don't you know. Doesn't do a thing nowadays but dig in the garden with a spud .
  • (informal) A potato.
  • * 1927 , Boys' Life (May 1927, page 8)
  • We were peeling spuds on afternoon detail back of the lodge at summer camp — Billy Dean and I, and two or three more — and as usual arguing about whether the camp work ought to be done that way or not
  • A hole in a sock.
  • * 1958 , M, K. Joseph, I'll Soldier No More: A Novel ,
  • He leans over to one side to get the light, as he darns a hole in the heel of a sock. He is getting pretty smart at it now, and no longer makes spuds in the sock to chafe his heels.
  • * 1990 , Ray Salisbury, Sweet Thursday: A Novel ,
  • He was getting tall too, and his trousers were short even though his turn-ups had been turned down, and he'd got a spud in his socks where his shoe rubbed where he trod over trying to walk bow-legged to look like a cowboy.
  • * 2000 , Christopher Nolan, The Banyan Tree: A Novel ,
  • His wife was darning a sock, running a needle and yarn across and back, over and under, up and down, gradually filling in the big spud -hole in her husband's sock.
  • * 2007 , Trevor Griffiths, Sam, Sam'' in ''Theatre Plays One ,
  • (Already becoming absorbed in his feet through the giant spud in his sock)'' Anyway, I'm er, I'm sorry. A quite unnecessary embarrassment for you. ''(He removes sock completely, begins rhythmic rubbing of webs)
  • (obsolete, US, dialect) Anything short and thick; specifically, a piece of dough boiled in fat.
  • (Webster 1913)

    Derived terms

    * spud gun * spudger * spudlike


  • (drilling) To begin drilling an oil well; to drill by moving the drill bit and shaft up and down, or by raising and dropping a bit.
  • * 1911 , Isaiah Bowman, United States Geological Survey Water-Supply Paper 257: Well-Drilling Methods , page 46,
  • A rope called the jerk line is attached to the wrist pin of the band-wheel crank, brought inside the derrick, and attached to the part of the drilling cable which extends from the crown pulley to the bull-wheel shaft by a curved metal slide called a spudding shoe. (See fig. 8.)
  • * 1999 , Steve Devereux, Drilling for Oil & Gas: A Nontechnical Guide , page 86,
  • When a well is spudded , the drilling assembly is loosely tied to the guide wires with 1/2? manila rope.
  • * 2008 , Ruwan Rajapakse, Pile Design and Construction Rules of Thumb , page 367,
  • Spudding' is the process of lifting and dropping the pile constantly until the obstruction is broken into pieces. Obviously, '''spudding''' cannot be done with lighter piles (timber or pipe piles). Concrete piles and steel H-piles are good candidates for ' spudding .
  • * 2008 , J. K. Lasser, J.K. Lasser?s Your Income Tax: 2009 , Professional Edition, page 238,
  • Prepayments of drilling expenses are deductible by tax-shelter investors only if the well is “spudded ” within 90 days after the close of the taxable year in which the prepayment was made, and the deduction is limited to the original amount of the investment.
  • (roofing) To remove the roofing aggregate and most of the bituminous top coating by scraping and chipping.
  • Derived terms

    * spudding shoe


    * *