from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition
- n. A medieval catapult for hurling heavy stones.
from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License
- n. A medieval siege engine consisting of a large pivoting arm heavily weighted on one end. Considered to be the technological successor to the catapult.
- n. A torture device for dunking suspected witches by means of a chair attached to the end of a long pole.
from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English
- n. A cucking stool; a tumbrel.
- n. A military engine used in the Middle Ages for throwing stones, etc. It acted by means of a great weight fastened to the short arm of a lever, which, being let fall, raised the end of the long arm with great velocity, hurling stones with much force.
- n. A kind of balance for weighing.
from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
- n. In medieval warfare, a missile engine resembling the ballista.
- n. A kind of balance or scales used in weighing coins or other small articles, the pan containing which tilts over if the balance is not exact.
- n. A kind of trap for catching small birds or animals by the tilting of the part on which the bait is placed.
- n. A cucking-stool.
from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.
- n. an engine that provided medieval artillery used during sieges; a heavy war engine for hurling large stones and other missiles
Middle English, from Old French, from trebucher, to overthrow : tre-, over (from Latin trāns-; see trans-) + but, trunk of the body (of Germanic origin).(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
From Old French trebuchet, trebuket et al. (modern trébuchet), from trebuchier ("to overthrow, topple"), from tre- + *buchier, from Old French buc ("trunk of the body"), from Old Frankish *būk (“belly, trunk, torso”), from Proto-Germanic *būkaz (“belly, abdomen, trunk”), from Proto-Indo-European *bʰōw- (“to blow, swell”). Cognate with Old High German būh ("belly"), Old English būc ("belly, trunk"). More at bouk. (Wiktionary)