Definition from Wiktionary, the free dictionary
Jump to: navigation, search
See also: Bolster


Wikipedia has an article on:
A bolster on a bed.

Alternative forms[edit]


From Middle English bolstre, from Old English bolster (bolster, cushion), from Proto-Germanic *bulstraz, *bulstrą (bolster), from Proto-Indo-European *bʰelǵʰ- (bag, pillow, paunch), from Proto-Indo-European *bʰel- (to swell, blow, inflate, burst). Cognate with Scots bowster (bolster), West Frisian bulster (mattress), Dutch bolster (husk, shell), German Polster (bolster, pillow, pad), Swedish bolster (soft mattress, bolster), Icelandic bólstur (pillow).



Bolster or pillow (structural) ( - 325191)

bolster (plural bolsters)

  1. A large cushion or pillow.
  2. A pad, quilt, or anything used to hinder pressure, support part of the body, or make a bandage sit easy upon a wounded part; a compress.
    • John Gay
      This arm shall be a bolster for thy head.
  3. (vehicles, agriculture) A small spacer located on top of the axle of horse-drawn wagons which give the front wheels enough clearance to turn.
  4. A short, horizontal, structural timber between a post and a beam for enlarging the bearing area of the post and/or reducing the span of the beam. Sometimes also called a pillow or cross-head (Australian English).
  5. The perforated plate in a punching machine on which anything rests when being punched.
  6. The part of a knife blade that abuts upon the end of the handle.
  7. The metallic end of a pocketknife handle.
  8. (architecture) The rolls forming the ends or sides of the Ionic capital.
    (Can we find and add a quotation of G. Francis to this entry?)
  9. (military, historical) A block of wood on the carriage of a siege gun, upon which the breech of the gun rests when arranged for transportation.




bolster (third-person singular simple present bolsters, present participle bolstering, simple past and past participle bolstered)

  1. To brace, reinforce, secure, or support.
    • 2017 January 20, Annie Zaleski, “AFI sounds refreshed and rejuvenated on its 10th album, AFI (The Blood Album)”, in The Onion AV Club[1]:
      Puget also teamed up with Matt Hyde (Deftones, Slayer) to co-produce the record, which was another smart move: Together, the pair ensures that AFI (The Blood Album)‘s arrangements are streamlined, but bolstered by just the right amount of atmospheric texture.





From Proto-Germanic *bulstraz.



bolster m (plural bolsters, diminutive bolstertje n)

  1. a bur, a spiny cupule, often of a chestnut

Derived terms[edit]



From Old Swedish bulster, bolster, from Old Norse bólstr, bulstr, from Proto-Germanic *bulstraz, from Proto-Indo-European *bʰelǵʰ- (bag, pillow, paunch). Compare Icelandic bólstur, Dutch bolster, German Polster and English bolster.


bolster n

  1. a bolster, a large cushion or pillow


Declension of bolster 
Singular Plural
Indefinite Definite Indefinite Definite
Nominative bolster bolstret bolster bolstren
Genitive bolsters bolstrets bolsters bolstrens