[ kwawr-ter-staf, -stahf ]
/ ˈkwɔr tərˌstæf, -ˌstɑf /

noun, plural quar·ter·staves [kwawr-ter-steyvz] /ˈkwɔr tərˌsteɪvz/, quar·ter·staffs.

a former English weapon consisting of a stout pole 6 to 8 feet (1.8 to 2.4 meters) long, tipped with iron.
exercise or fighting with this weapon.

Origin of quarterstaff

First recorded in 1540–50; quarter + staff1
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

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British Dictionary definitions for quarterstaff


/ (ˈkwɔːtəˌstɑːf) /

noun plural -staves (-ˌsteɪvz, -ˌstɑːvz)

a stout iron-tipped wooden staff about 6ft long, formerly used in England as a weapon
the use of such a staff in fighting, sport, or exercise

Word Origin for quarterstaff

C16: of uncertain origin
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