spell of surfing

  • dojibear

    Senior Member
    English - Northeast US
    "Surfing" is the sport and "surf" is the verb for doing it. "Went for an early surf" treats that verb like a noun, the way we might say "went for an early run".

    Here "spell" is a noun with the WR dictionary meaning "a continuous period of activity". So it means "he surfed for a while", with no clear indication of how long.
    It's an odd usage, but spell can also mean "a fit or spasm of something, as in "a fit of coughing", i.e. something you can't resist. And while that is negative, here perhaps it's being used in a more positive way.

    I agree with my fellow posters above that the more primary meaning is "a period of time" but am just saying this second meaning could overlap the first. :rolleyes:


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