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[joust, juhst, joost] /dʒaʊst, dʒʌst, dʒust/
a combat in which two knights on horseback attempted to unhorse each other with blunted lances.
this type of combat fought in a highly formalized manner as part of a tournament.
jousts, a tournament.
a personal competition or struggle.
verb (used without object)
to contend in a joust or tournament.
to contend, compete, or struggle:
The candidates will joust in a television debate.
Also, just.
Origin of joust
1250-1300; (v.) Middle English justen, jousten < Old French juster, joster, jouster to tilt in the lists < Vulgar Latin *juxtāre to approach, clash, derivative of Latin juxtā approaching, bordering; (noun) Middle English juste, jouste < Old French juste, etc., derivative of juster
Related forms
jouster, noun Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for jousting
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • But ever when there was any jousting of knights, that would he see if he could.

  • Some she knew were evil men, yet, as knights, were powerful in jousting.

    King Arthur's Knights

    Henry Gilbert
  • He was taught all the arts of war, of riding, jousting, fencing.

    History of Education Levi Seeley
  • As it was, all the jousting was done, and most of the nobles had already gone away.

    Robin Hood Paul Creswick
  • Robin saw that the jousting was done, and that, after all, the red knights were conquerors.

    Robin Hood Paul Creswick
  • This has made him twice say, that in this jousting with sticks no one was wounded.

  • The first figure (A189, plate 43) shows a suit of foot-armour for jousting.

    Spanish Arms and Armour Albert F. Calvert
  • His followers in the jousting / on every side high honor won.

  • The point about jousting struck her as particularly well taken.

    The Man Upstairs P. G. Wodehouse
British Dictionary definitions for jousting


a combat between two mounted knights tilting against each other with lances. A tournament consisted of a series of such engagements
(intransitive; often foll by against or with) to encounter or engage in such a tournament: he jousted with five opponents
Derived Forms
jouster, noun
Word Origin
C13: from Old French jouste, from jouster to fight on horseback, from Vulgar Latin juxtāre (unattested) to come together, from Latin juxtā close
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for jousting



c.1300, from Old French joustes, from joster (see joust (v.)). The sport was popular with Anglo-Norman knights.

These early tournaments were very rough affairs, in every sense, quite unlike the chivalrous contests of later days; the rival parties fought in groups, and it was considered not only fair but commendable to hold off until you saw some of your adversaries getting tired and then to join in the attack on them; the object was not to break a lance in the most approved style, but frankly to disable as many opponents as possible for the sake of obtaining their horses, arms, and ransoms. [L.F. Salzman, "English Life in the Middle Ages," Oxford, 1950]



c.1300, "fight with a spear or lance on horseback with another knight; tilt in a tournament," from Old French joster "to joust, tilt," from Vulgar Latin *iuxtare "to approach, come together, meet," originally "be next to," from Latin iuxta "beside, near," related to iungere "join together" (see jugular). Formerly spelled, and until modern times pronounced, "just." Related: Jousted; jousting.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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