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bascule

[bas-kyool]
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noun Civil Engineering.
  1. a device operating like a balance or seesaw, especially an arrangement of a movable bridge (bascule bridge) by which the rising floor or section is counterbalanced by a weight.
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Origin of bascule

1670–80; French: name for a number of seesawlike mechanical devices, Middle French bacule, noun derivative of baculer to strike on the buttocks (probably orig., to land on one's buttocks), equivalent to bas down (see base2) + -culer, verbal derivative of cul rump, buttocks (see culet); -s- by false analysis as bas(se) adj. + cule taken as a feminine noun
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

British Dictionary definitions for bascule-bridge

bascule

noun
  1. Also called: balance bridge, counterpoise bridge a bridge with a movable section hinged about a horizontal axis and counterbalanced by a weightCompare drawbridge
  2. a movable roadway forming part of such a bridgeTower Bridge has two bascules
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Word Origin

C17: from French: seesaw, from bas low + cul rump; see base ², culet
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