Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. The fortified main tower of a castle; a keep.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. The fortified tower of a motte or early castle; a keep.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. The chief tower, also called the keep; a massive tower in ancient castles, forming the strongest part of the fortifications. See Illust. of castle.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. The inner tower, keep, or stronghold of a castle. See cut under castle.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • n. the main tower within the walls of a medieval castle or fortress

Etymologies

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

Variant of dungeon.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

From Old French donjon.

Examples

  • It held meetings in our big vault, which they called the donjon keep, and, naturally, when one of them was going on, boys were scarcer around the office than hen's teeth.

    Old Gorgon Graham

  • Although the donjon was a fundamental element of castle design from Norman times, Greenwich had no fortifications, no moat, and no visible sense of being a castle.

    The Dragon’s Trail

  • After passing the donjon, which is situated at the extreme end of the left wing, we went to the back of the chateau.

    Mystère de la chambre jaune. English

  • Not far from the donjon is the Decorated church of Saint Lawrence, where the usual late Gothic dies off into _Renaissance_ at the west end.

    Sketches of Travel in Normandy and Maine

  • The central tower, commonly called the donjon, was the castle's last line of defense.

    TravelPod.com TravelStream™ — Recent Entries at TravelPod.com

  • It had a "donjon," or keep, which was generally occupied by the baron as

    Comic History of England

  • "donjon" of great antiquity, crenelated, with towers at each corner and the whole construction forming an admirable specimen of Hispano-Flemish architecture.

    Vanished towers and chimes of Flanders

  • After Eric posed for a few seconds on the steps of the chapel and then inexplicably flew off to the top of the donjon in a huff, Luc motioned for us to follow him into the castle.

    Crossed

  • I watched Eric disappear over the edge of the donjon, surprised to see his reflection in the water.

    Crossed

  • He stood halfway between us and the main donjon, wearing orange sweatpants, a matching hoodie, blue-tinted sunglasses, and those same Onmyodo shoes.

    Crossed

Comments

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  • Railroad telegraphers' shorthand for the phrase "What does the difference amount to?" --US Railway Association, Standard Cipher Code, 1906.

    January 22, 2013

  • A keep or great tower; the main citadel of a castle.

    August 25, 2008