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.

Nearby words

  1. backsplice,
  2. backstab,
  3. backstabber,
  4. backstage,
  5. backstairs,
  6. backstitch,
  7. backstop,
  8. backstory,
  9. backstrap loom,
  10. backstreet

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


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