• synonyms


or joy stick

  1. Informal. the control stick of an airplane, tank, or other vehicle.
  2. Computers. a lever resembling this, used to control movement of a cursor or other graphic element for video games and computer graphics.Compare mouse(def 4), stylus(def 3).
  3. any leverlike switch for controlling, manipulating, guiding, or the like.
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Origin of joystick

First recorded in 1905–10; joy + stick1
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for joy-stick

Historical Examples

  • He leapt lightly into the machine and jiggled the joy-stick.

    Tam O' The Scoots

    Edgar Wallace

  • "Good-bye, sir," replied Dastral, his hand already on the joy-stick.

  • A girl sat at the joy-stick looking as if carved out of wood.

    The White Morning

    Gertrude Atherton

  • At two thousand feet Dastral pushed back the joy-stick, and flattened out.

  • These ailerons, wing sections, really, are controlled by a device known as the joy-stick in the cockpit.

British Dictionary definitions for joy-stick


  1. informal the control stick of an aircraft or of any of various machines
  2. computing a lever by means of which the display on a screen may be controlled used esp for games, flight simulators, etc
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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 joy-stick



also joy stick, 1910, aviators' slang for the control lever of an airplane, from joy + stick (n.).

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper