Definitions

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

  • n. An architectural support or base, as for a column or statue.
  • n. A support or foundation.
  • n. A position of high regard or adoration.
  • transitive v. To place on or provide with a pedestal.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. The base or foot of a column, statue, vase, lamp, or the like; the part on which an upright work stands.
  • n. A casting secured to the frame of a truck of a railcar and forming a jaw for holding a journal box.
  • n. A pillow block; a low housing.
  • n. An iron socket, or support, for the foot of a brace at the end of a truss where it rests on a pier.
  • n. a pedestal coil, group of connected straight pipes arranged side by side and one above another, used in a radiator.
  • v. To set or support on (or as if on) a pedestal.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. The base or foot of a column, statue, vase, lamp, or the like; the part on which an upright work stands. It consists of three parts, the base, the die or dado, and the cornice or surbase molding. See Illust. of column.
  • n. A short free-standing column or column-like object designed to support a work of art or other object; a column serving the same function as the base of a statue. It may be made of wood, marble, or other suitable material.
  • n. A part of a desk which contains a frame and drawers, stands on the floor, and provides support for the desk surface. There may be zero, one, or two such pedestals in a desk.
  • n.
  • n. A casting secured to the frame of a truck and forming a jaw for holding a journal box.
  • n. A pillow block; a low housing.
  • n. An iron socket, or support, for the foot of a brace at the end of a truss where it rests on a pier.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • To place on a pedestal; support as a pedestal.
  • n. That which serves as a foot or support, particularly for a piece of sculpture, a monument, or other work of art.
  • n. In machinery, the standards of a pillow-block, holding the brasses in which the shaft turns.
  • n. In a railroad-car, a casting of inverted-U shape bolted to the truck-frame to hold in place the journal-box of the axle, which rises and falls in the pedestal with the collapse and expansion of the springs. (See cut under car-truck.) Called in England an axle-guard or horn-plate.
  • n. In bridge-building, that portion of an abutment or pier which furnishes the immediate support for an end of a bridge truss or girder.

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

  • n. a position of great esteem (and supposed superiority)
  • n. a support or foundation
  • n. an architectural support or base (as for a column or statue)

Etymologies

Obsolete French, from Italian piedestallo : piè, foot (from Latin pēs; see pedi-) + di, of (from Latin ; see de-) + stallo, stall (of Germanic origin).
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
From Middle French piédestal, from Italian piedistallo (pie "foot" di "of" stall "stand") "footstall". (Wiktionary)

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