baluster

[bal-uh-ster]

noun

Architecture. any of a number of closely spaced supports for a railing.
balusters, a balustrade.
any of various symmetrical supports, as furniture legs or spindles, tending to swell toward the bottom or top.

Origin of baluster

1595–1605; < French, Middle French balustre < Italian balaustro pillar shaped like the calyx of the pomegranate flower, ultimately < Latin balaustium < Greek balaústion pomegranate flower
Related formsbal·us·tered, adjective
Can be confusedbaluster balustrade banister
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Related Words for baluster

support, balustrade, rail, handrail, shaft, pin, rod, stem, stalk, axle, axis, rachis, mandrel

Examples from the Web for baluster

Historical Examples of baluster


British Dictionary definitions for baluster

baluster

noun

any of a set of posts supporting a rail or coping

adjective

(of a shape) swelling at the base and rising in a concave curve to a narrow stem or necka baluster goblet stem

Word Origin for baluster

C17: from French balustre, from Italian balaustro pillar resembling a pomegranate flower, ultimately from Greek balaustion
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

Word Origin and History for baluster
n.

"support for a railing," c.1600, from French balustre, from Italian balaustro "pillar," from balausta "flower of the wild pomegranate," from Greek balaustion (perhaps of Semitic origin, cf. Aramaic balatz "flower of the wild pomegranate"). Staircase uprights had lyre-like double curves, like the calyx tube of the pomegranate flower.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper