ballista

[ buh-lis-tuh ]
/ bəˈlɪs tə /

noun, plural bal·lis·tae [buh-lis-tee]. /bəˈlɪs ti/.

an ancient military engine for throwing stones or other missiles.

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Origin of ballista

1590–1600; <Latin, probably <Greek *ballistā́s, dialectal variant of *ballistḗs, equivalent to báll(ein) to throw + -istēs-ist
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2020

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British Dictionary definitions for ballista

ballista
/ (bəˈlɪstə) /

noun plural -tae (-tiː)

an ancient catapult for hurling stones, etc
an ancient form of large crossbow used to propel a spear

Word Origin for ballista

C16: from Latin, ultimately from Greek ballein to throw
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