lodestar

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English[edit]

Etymology[edit]

From lode (journey, course) +‎ star, where lode is an archaic noun from the verb lithe (to go, journey), related to lead. Cognate with Old Norse leiðarstjarna, German Leitstern, Swedish ledstjärna. English from the 14th century as loode sterre, lood-sterre, lade-sterne, 15th century lode sterre, 16th century lode starre.

Alternative forms[edit]

Noun[edit]

lodestar (plural lodestars)

  1. A star used as a navigation reference, particularly a pole star such as Polaris.
  2. A guiding tenet or principle.

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