• synonyms


[boo-struh-feed-n, -fee-don, bou-]
  1. an ancient method of writing in which the lines run alternately from right to left and from left to right.
Show More

Origin of boustrophedon

1775–85; < Greek boustrophēdón literally, like ox-turning (in plowing), equivalent to bou- (stem of boûs) ox + -strophē- (see strophe) + -don adv. suffix
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for boustrophedon

Historical Examples of boustrophedon

  • It is written in the most ancient Greek characters, and in the Boustrophedon manner.

    Museum of Antiquity

    L. W. Yaggy

  • The words of the text are ranged in squares in such a manner as to be read either vertically or boustrophedon.

British Dictionary definitions for boustrophedon


  1. having alternate lines written from right to left and from left to right
Show More

Word Origin for boustrophedon

C17: from Greek, literally: turning as in ploughing with oxen, from bous ox + -strophēdon from strephein to turn; see strophe
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 boustrophedon


1783, ancient form of writing with lines alternately written left-to-right and right-to-left, from Greek, literally "turning as an ox in plowing," from bous "ox" (see cow (n.)) + strephein "to turn" (see strophe).

Show More
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper