• synonyms


  1. a ladder having flat steps or treads in place of rungs.
  2. any ladder, especially a tall one with a hinged frame opening up to form four supporting legs.
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Origin of stepladder

First recorded in 1745–55; step + ladder
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for stepladder

Historical Examples of stepladder

  • Don't forget the stepladder, and plenty of tacks and string.

    Alexander's Bridge and The Barrel Organ

    Willa Cather and Alfred Noyes

  • He slipped it into his pocket and stood up on the stepladder.

  • She skipped up the stepladder as joyously as a kitten climbs a tree.

    Peggy in Her Blue Frock

    Eliza Orne White

  • Widow Blunt went into her house, and brought out her stepladder.

  • Thaine was busy on the top of the stepladder and did not see Leigh as she came in.

    Winning the Wilderness

    Margaret Hill McCarter

British Dictionary definitions for stepladder


  1. a folding portable ladder that is made of broad flat steps fixed to a supporting frame hinged at the top to another supporting frame
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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 stepladder


one with steps instead of rungs, 1751, from step (n.) + ladder.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper