Martello tower

or martello tower

[ mahr-tel-oh ]
/ mɑrˈtɛl oʊ /

noun Fortification.

a circular, towerlike fort with guns on the top.

Origin of Martello tower

named after Cape Mortella, Corsica, where a tower of this kind was taken by British forces in 1794
Also called martel·lo, Martel·lo. Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

British Dictionary definitions for martello tower

Martello tower


/ (mɑːˈtɛləʊ) /


a small circular tower for coastal defence, formerly much used in Europe

Word Origin for Martello tower

C18: after Cape Mortella in Corsica, where the British navy captured a tower of this type in 1794
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