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- (transitive) To be astride something, to stand over or sit on with legs on either side, especially to sit on a horse.
- Synonym: straddle
- 1816, William Wordsworth, Composed in Recollection of the Expedition of the French into Russia, February 1816, lines 27–31:
- But fleeter far the pinions of the Wind, / Which from Siberian caves the monarch freed, / And sent him forth, with squadrons of his kind, / And bade the Snow their ample backs bestride, / And to the battle ride.
- 1852, The Crystal Palace and Its Contents, page 139:
- The knightly Crusader bestrides a war-horse of heavy proportions , which he has suddenly reined in , as he waves on high a flag as a rallying sign for his followers.
- 1962 August, G. Freeman Allen, “Traffic control on the Great Northern Line”, in Modern Railways, page 128:
- Apart from the traffic that is originated within its own district, Doncaster is the hub of many important Eastern Region flows. [...] It bestrides busy routes to and from the Midlands and, of course, is a landmark on the East Coast trunk route between north and south.
- 1967, Joseph Singer, Elaine Gottlieb, “Chapter 2”, in Farrar, Straus and Giroux, editor, The Manor, New York, translation of original by Isaac Bashevis Singer, part II, page 29:
- […] she would take the betrothal document from her father's chest of drawers and pore over the signature: Ezriel Babad. […] His signature seemed to bestride her own.
- (transitive) To stride over, or across.
- (transitive, figuratively) To dominate.
- 1962, Ezekiel Mphahlele, “Chapter 5”, in Frederick A. Praeger, editor, The African Image, New York, page 86:
- You see, Jim Crow does it differently in Africa. His is a slow but tight and deadly squeeze. […] He bestrides this continent from Algiers to Cape Town, and the guns around his belt face east, west, south and north.
- 1990, Anthony Paul, “Dutch Literature and the Translation Barrier”, in Bart Westerweel, Theo D'haen, editors, Something Understood: Studies in Anglo-Dutch Literary Translation, Amsterdam: Rodopi, page 65:
- Over the past two hundred years the English language has risen, seemingly irresistably, to its present position of world-bestriding supremacy.
to sit with legs on both sides of something
dominate — see dominate
- “bestride” in The Bokmål Dictionary.