American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition
- n. A belt or sash worn around the waist.
- n. Something that encircles like a belt.
- n. An elasticized, flexible undergarment worn over the waist and hips, especially by women, to give the body a more slender appearance.
- n. A band made around the trunk of a tree by the removal of a strip of bark.
- n. The edge of a cut gem held by the setting.
- n. Anatomy The pelvic or pectoral girdle.
- v. To encircle with or as if with a belt. See Synonyms at surround.
- v. To circle around: a ring of hills that girdled the city.
- v. To remove a band of bark and cambium from the circumference of (a tree), usually in order to kill it.
Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
- n. A band, belt, or zone; something drawn round the waist of a person and fastened: as, a girdle of fine linen; a leathern girdle. The primary use of the girdle is to confine to the person the long flowing garments anciently, and still in some countries, worn by both men and women; and it is now frequently used in women's dress (commonly called a belt) and in military costume (a belt or sash). (See
cestus.) The girdle has also served for the support of weapons, utensils, bags or pockets, etc. In the middle ages books were sometimes bound with a strip of flexible stuff hanging from one end of the volume, which could be drawn through the girdle and secured. Among many peoples, the girdle being large and loose, the scabbard of a sword or long dagger is passed through the girdle instead of being hung from it, a hook or projecting button serving to hold it in place. In ecclesiastical use the girdle is a cord with which the priest or other cleric binds the alb about the waist. Formerly it was flat and broad, and sometimes adorned with jewels; in the Roman Catholic Church it has been changed to a long cord with dependent extremities and tassels. It is regarded as a symbol of continence and self-restraint. It is usually of linen, though sometimes of wool, and is generally white, but sometimes colored to adapt it to the color of the other vestments.
- n. Hence An inclosing circle, or that which encircles; circumference; compass; limit.
- n. The zodiac (which see).
- n. In gem-cutting; the line or edge that separates the upper from the lower part of a brilliant or other cut stone. It is parallel to the table and culet, and is the part held by the setting. See cut under brilliant.
- n. In architecture, a small band or fillet round the shaft of a column.
- n. In coal-mining, a thin bed of sandstone.
- n. In anatomy, the osseous arch or bony belt by which either limb or diverging appendage is attached to the axial skeleton; the proximal segment of the appendicular skeleton.
- n. In botany, a (usually) longitudinal belt formed by the overlapping edges of two valves of a diatom frustule.
- n. A seaweed, Laminaria digitata, the divisions of whose fronds are strap-like.
- To encircle or bind with a belt, cord, or sash; gird.
- To make the circuit of; encompass; environ; inclose; shut in.
- To draw a line round, as by marking or cutting; specifically, to cut a complete circle round, as a tree or a limb. In new countries, as North America, in clearing land of trees they are often girdled by cutting through the bark and into the sap-wood, so that they may die and ultimately fall by their own decay. Mice often girdle young trees by gnawing.
- n. A griddle.
- n. A ring made round the trunk of a tree by the removal of the bark either purposely or accidentally.
- n. In earthworms, the cingulum or clitellum.
- n. That which girds, encircles, or encloses; a circumference
- n. A belt; especially, a belt, sash, or article of dress encircling the body usually at the waist, often used to support stockings or hosiery.
- n. The zodiac; also, the equator.
- n. The line of greatest circumference of a brilliant-cut diamond, at which it is grasped by the setting.
- n. A thin bed or stratum of stone.
- n. The clitellum of an earthworm.
- n. Scotland, Northern England Alternative form of griddle.
- v. transitive To gird, encircle, or constrain by such means.
- v. transitive To kill or stunt a tree by removing or inverting a ring of bark.
GNU Webster's 1913
- n. Scot. & Prov. Eng. A griddle.
- n. That which girds, encircles, or incloses; a circumference; a belt; esp., a belt, sash, or article of dress encircling the body usually at the waist; a cestus.
- n. Poetic The zodiac; also, the equator.
- n. (Jewelry) The line ofgreatest circumference of a brilliant-cut diamond, at which it is grasped by the setting. See
- n. (Mining) A thin bed or stratum of stone.
- n. (Zoöl.) The clitellus of an earthworm.
- v. To bind with a belt or sash; to gird.
- v. To inclose; to environ; to shut in.
- v. United States To make a cut or gnaw a groove around (a tree, etc.) through the bark and alburnum, thus killing it.
- n. an encircling or ringlike structure
- v. cut a girdle around so as to kill by interrupting the circulation of water and nutrients
- v. put a girdle on or around
- n. a band of material around the waist that strengthens a skirt or trousers
- n. a woman's close-fitting foundation garment
- From Old English grydel. (Wiktionary)
- Middle English girdel, from Old English gyrdel. (American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
“When he took them to be to him for a people, it was that they might be to him for a name, and for a praise, and for a glory, as a girdle is an ornament to a man, and particularly the curious girdle of the ephod was to the high-priest for glory and for beauty.”
“7 Then I went to Euphrates, and digged, and took the girdle from the place where I had hid it: and, behold, the girdle was marred, it was profitable for nothing.”
“They're wearing girdles and also underneath the girdle is a little garter sewed under the girdle and that garter rubs the skin sometimes.”
“Hanging from her girdle was a series of embroidered disks depicting a silver comb, a small golden boar, and other images from the myth.”
“Dumbbell variations potentially hit more of the stabilizer muscles in your shoulder girdle, which is a nice benefit.”
“For a narrower bandage than the wound binds the wound like a girdle, which is not proper, or the first turn should comprehend the whole wound, and the bandaging should extend beyond it on both sides.”
“I will agree with you that the handkerchief, which commentators and imitators have been pleased to call the girdle of Venus, is a charming figure; but I never understood that it was a soporific, nor how Juno could receive the caresses of the master of the gods for the purpose of putting him to sleep.”
“The first lady to use a girdle was the mother of Ishmael.”
“This evil people, which refuse to hear my words, which walk in the imagination of their heart, and walk after other gods, to serve them, and to worship them, shall even be as this girdle, which is good for nothing.”
“The girdle is the depository of many things dear to a Tibetan — his purse, rude knife, heavy tinder-box, tobacco pouch, pipe, distaff, and sundry charms and amulets.”
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