from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition
- n. A rectangular column with a capital and base, projecting only slightly from a wall as an ornamental motif.
from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License
- n. A rectangular column that projects partially from the wall to which it attached; it gives the appearance of a support, but is only for decoration.
from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English
- n. An upright architectural member right-angled in plan, constructionally a pier (See pier, 1 (b)), but architecturally corresponding to a column, having capital, shaft, and base to agree with those of the columns of the same order. In most cases the projection from the wall is one third of its width, or less.
from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
- n. A square pillar, with its capital and base, projecting from a pier, or from a wall, to the extent of from one quarter to one third of its breadth; an engaged pillar.
from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.
- n. a rectangular column that usually projects about a third of its width from the wall to which it is attached
French pilastre, from Old French, from Old Italian pilastro, from Medieval Latin pīlaster : Latin pīla, pillar + Latin -aster, n. suff., or blend of Latin pīla, pillar, and Late Latin parastatēs, pilaster (from Greek, stay, supporter : para-, beside; see para-1 + -statēs, -stat).(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
From Middle French pilastre, from Italian pilastro. (Wiktionary)