Fake Etymologies

Interesting is better than true.

spi‧ral, adj. /ˈspaɪɹəl/

Twisting support strutures were used to protect tall, thin spires from the effects of high wind, converting the linear force into torsion. Other such twisted structures were said to be “like a spire,” then fully adjectivized into “spiral.”

Modern technical usage differentiates between a spiral and a helix, however.