baluster

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English[edit]

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Alternative forms[edit]

Etymology[edit]

French balustre, from Italian balaustro 'pillar', from balausta 'wild pomegranate flower', so named because of resemblance to the swelling form of the half-open flower, from Ancient Greek βαλαύστιον (balaústion), from Semitic (compare Aramaic balatz 'wild pomegranate flower').

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Noun[edit]

baluster (plural balusters)

  1. (architecture)  A short column used in a group to support a rail, as commonly found on the side of a stairway; a banister.
    • 1963, Margery Allingham, chapter 3, The China Governess[1]:
      Sepia Delft tiles surrounded the fireplace, their crudely drawn Biblical scenes in faded cyclamen blending with the pinkish pine, while above them, instead of a mantelshelf, there was an archway high enough to form a balcony with slender balusters and a tapestry-hung wall behind.

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