What does the word whorl mean?

Usage examples for whorl

  1. A narrow- chested woman, caught in the whorl of one such vortex, fainted back against the bundle- laden arms that pressed her on. – Every Soul Hath Its Song by Fannie Hurst
  2. A streak of yellow and a flaming whorl had shot athwart the sky; dawn was breaking swiftly in the Arctic east. – The Ice Pilot by Henry Leverage