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From earlier verrel, altered under the influence of Latin ferrum (iron), from Old French virole (ferrule), from Latin viriola (little bracelet), diminutive of viria (bracelet), from Gaulish, from Proto-Celtic *wēros (crooked) (compare Middle Irish fiar (bent, crooked), Welsh gŵyr, Breton gwar (curved)), from Proto-Indo-European *weyh₁ros (turned, twisted, threaded), from Proto-Indo-European *weyh₁- (to turn, twist, weave).



ferrule (plural ferrules)

  1. A metal band or cap placed around a shaft to reinforce it or to prevent splitting.
    • 1905, Baroness Emmuska Orczy, chapter 2, in The Ayrsham Mystery[1]:
      The cane was undoubtedly of foreign make, for it had a solid silver ferrule at one end, which was not English hall–marked.
    • 1934, George Orwell, chapter 23, in Burmese Days[2]:
      [] having settled herself in the rickshaw, [she] poked him in the back with the ferrule of her umbrella to start him.
    • 1986, William Gibson, Count Zero:
      Lucas withdrew the cane. Its polished ferrule flashed in the lantern glare.
  2. A bushing for securing a pipe joint.
  3. A metal sleeve placed inside a gutter at the top.
  4. In billiards, the plastic band attaching the tip to the cue.
  5. In painting, the pinched metal band which holds the bristles of a brush to the shaft.
  6. On an ice axe, the metal spike at the end of the shaft.


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