- a frame of wood with a row of long curved teeth projecting above and parallel to a scythe, for laying grain in bunches as it is cut.
- a scythe together with the cradle in which it is set.
- a shaped support for a boat, cast, etc.; chock.
- truss(def 9).
- a moving framework on which a hull slides down the ways when launched.
- a built-up form on which plates of irregular form are shaped.
verb (used with object), cra·dled, cra·dling.
verb (used without object), cra·dled, cra·dling.
Origin of cradle
Synonyms for cradle
- a framework of several wooden fingers attached to a scythe to gather the grain into bunches as it is cut
- a scythe equipped with such a cradle; cradle scythe
- a collar of wooden fingers that prevents a horse or cow from turning its head and biting itself
Word Origin for cradle
c.1200, cradel, from Old English cradol "little bed, cot," from Proto-Germanic *kradulas "basket" (cf. Old High German kratto, krezzo "basket," German Krätze "basket carried on the back"). Cat's cradle is from 1768. Cradle-snatching "amorous pursuit of younger person" is 1925, U.S. slang.
c.1500, from cradle (n.). Related: Cradled; cradling.
rob the cradle
Have a romantic or sexual relationship with someone much younger than oneself, as in The old editor was notorious for robbing the cradle, always trying to date some young reporter. [Colloquial; first half of 1900s]
see from the cradle to the grave; rob the cradle.