• synonyms


[mur-luh n]
  1. (in a battlement) the solid part between two crenels.
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Origin of merlon

1695–1705; < French < Italian merlone, augmentative of merlo (in plural, merli battlements) < ?
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for merlon

Historical Examples

  • Then, making one end fast to a merlon, he slid down after her.

    The Devil in Iron

    Robert E. Howard

  • Simon pulled on one end of the rope, and it snaked around the merlon and came rippling down to him.

  • The same is also found in Italian battlements, where the merlon is of much greater height and is capped in a peculiar fashion.

  • Friar Jerome, armed with an enormous mace, mounted on a merlon, felled all who came within his reach.

    Annals of a Fortress

    E. Viollet-le-Duc

British Dictionary definitions for merlon


  1. fortifications the solid upright section in a crenellated battlement
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Word Origin

C18: from French, from Italian merlone, from merlo battlement
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 merlon


"solid part of a battlement," 1704, from French merlon (17c.), from Italian merlone, augmentative of merlo "battlement," perhaps a contraction of mergola, diminutive of Latin mergae "two-pronged pitchfork."

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper