backstay

1
[bak-stey]
|

noun

Machinery. a supporting or checking piece in a mechanism.
Building Trades. an anchored tension member, as a cable, permanently or temporarily supporting a compression member, as a tower or pole, subject to a pull above its base from the opposite direction.
a strip of leather at the back of a shoe used for reinforcement and sometimes to connect the quarters.

Origin of backstay

1
First recorded in 1860–65; back1 + stay2

backstay

2
[bak-stey]

noun

Nautical. any of various shrouds forming part of a vessel's standing rigging and leading aft from masts above a lower mast to the sides or stern of the vessel in order to reinforce the masts against forward pull.

Origin of backstay

2
First recorded in 1620–30; back1 + stay3
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for backstay

Historical Examples of backstay


British Dictionary definitions for backstay

backstay

noun

nautical a stay leading aft from the upper part of a mast to the deck or stern
machinery a supporting piece or arresting part
anything that supports or strengthens the back of something, such as leather covering the back seam of a shoe
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