composing stick


noun Printing.

a portable, adjustable, usually metal tray that the compositor holds in one hand while placing in it type gathered with the other hand.

Origin of composing stick

First recorded in 1670–80
Also called job stick. Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for composing stick

Historical Examples of composing stick

  • "Take this composing-stick and let me see whether you are competent or not," said Keimer.

    The Printer Boy.

    William M. Thayer

  • Being expert with the composing-stick, he was readily engaged at good wages by his old employer, Keimer.

    Benjamin Franklin

    John Torrey Morse, Jr.

  • A man comes along with a composing-stick in his pocket and starts a newspaper.

    The World on Wheels and Other Sketches

    Benjamin F. (Benjamin Franklin) Taylor

  • When the composing-stick has been filled, it is emptied into the galley, which is a flat board, partly surrounded with a rim.

  • The whole process is completed by setting up the types in a printer's composing-stick, and tying them up with packthread.

British Dictionary definitions for composing stick

composing stick


printing a metal holder of adjustable width in which a compositor sets a line of type at a time by hand; now rarely used
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