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See also: Belay



From Middle English beleggen, bileggen, from Old English beleċġan (to cover, invest, surround, afflict, attribute to, charge with, accuse), equivalent to be- +‎ lay. Cognate with Dutch beleggen (to cover, overlay, belay), German belegen (to cover, occupy, belay), Swedish belägga (to pave).



belay (third-person singular simple present belays, present participle belaying, simple past and past participle belayed or belaid)

  1. (transitive, obsolete) To surround; environ; enclose.
  2. (transitive, obsolete) To overlay; adorn.
    • Spenser
      jacket [] belayed with silver lace
  3. (transitive, obsolete) To besiege; invest; surround.
  4. (transitive, obsolete) To lie in wait for in order to attack; block up or obstruct.
  5. (transitive) To make (a rope) fast by turning it round a fastening point such as a cleat or piton.
  6. (transitive) To secure (a person) to a rope or (a rope) to a person.
    He would need an experienced partner to belay him on the difficult climbs.
  7. (transitive) To lay aside; stop; cancel.
    I could only hope the remaining piton would belay his fall.
    Belay that order!
  8. (intransitive, nautical) The general command to stop or cease.
  9. (intransitive, nautical) To make a line fast by turns around a cleat, pin, or bitt.


The translations below need to be checked and inserted above into the appropriate translation tables, removing any numbers. Numbers do not necessarily match those in definitions. See instructions at Wiktionary:Entry layout#Translations.


belay (plural belays)

  1. (climbing) The securing of a rope to a rock or other projection.
  2. (climbing) The object to which a rope is secured.
  3. (climbing) A location at which a climber stops and builds an anchor with which to secure their partner.