Definitions

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

  • n. An upright stone or slab with an inscribed or sculptured surface, used as a monument or as a commemorative tablet in the face of a building.
  • n. The central core of tissue in the stem or root of a vascular plant, consisting of the xylem and phloem together with supporting tissues.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. A tall, slender stone monument, often with writing carved into its surface
  • n. The central core of the root and shoot system, especially including the vascular tissue.
  • n. The body of the arrow.
  • n. A stale, or handle; a stalk.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. Same as stela.
  • n. A stale, or handle; a stalk.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. An old spelling of steal, steal.
  • n. An obsolete form of stale.
  • n. In archaeology: An upright slab or pillar, often crowned with a rich anthemion, and sometimes bearing more or less elaborate sculpture or a painted scene, commonly used among the ancient Greeks as a gravestone.
  • n. A similar slab or pillar serving as a milestone, to bear an inscription in some public place, or for a like purpose.
  • n. In botany, the axial cylinder of a stem, beginning as the plerome (see plerome, 2, and plerome-sheath) and passing into the older tissues which supply the vascular tissue of the plant.

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

  • n. an ancient upright stone slab bearing markings
  • n. the usually cylindrical central vascular portion of the axis of a vascular plant

Etymologies

Greek stēlē, pillar.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
From Ancient Greek στήλη (stēlē, "pillar"). (Wiktionary)
See stale ("a handle"). (Wiktionary)

Examples

  • Gil Stein, director of the Oriental Institute, said the stele was a “rare and most informative discovery in having written evidence together with artistic and archaeological evidence from the Iron Age.”

    Found: An Ancient Monument to the Soul

  • On the upper part of the stele, which is now one of the treasures of the Louvre, Paris, King Hammurabi salutes, with his right hand reverently upraised, the sun god Shamash, seated on his throne, at the summit of E-sagila, by whom he is being presented with the stylus with which to inscribe the legal code.

    Myths of Babylonia and Assyria

  • The monument's imposing shape echoes the sculpted stone slabs, known as stele, that the ancient Mayans used to commemorate battles and funerals or to delineate territory.

    KansasCity.com: Front Page

  • Gil Stein, director of the Oriental Institute, said the stele was a "rare and most informative discovery in having written evidence together with artistic and archaeological evidence from the Iron Age."

    Free Internet Press

  • The stele is the first of its kind to be found intact in its original location, enabling scholars to learn about funerary customs and life in the eighth century B.C.

    PhysOrg.com - latest science and technology news stories

  • The gravestone, called a stele, is in nearly pristine condition and archaeologists were able to translate all the writing on it.

    Disinfo.com

  • The Marks were cut into their skin with a styluslike tool called a stele—the odd penlike object she’d seen Will use to draw on the door at the Dark House.

    Clockwork Angel

  • East was the upright "stele" (Gk. stele, a block or slab of stone), frequently ornamented with a fillet or a projecting curved moulding; in the West a slab for the closing of the grave was often used.

    The Catholic Encyclopedia, Volume 8: Infamy-Lapparent

  • This remarkable inscription is found on a stele which is preserved in the British Museum (No. 1027), and which was made in the ninth year of

    The Literature of the Ancient Egyptians

  • Saite Tafnakhti, returning from an expedition against the Arabs, during which he had been obliged to renounce the pomp and luxuries of life, had solemnly cursed him, and had caused his imprecations to be inscribed upon a "stele" [21] set up in the temple of Amon at Thebes.

    The Great Events by Famous Historians, Volume 01

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