from The Century Dictionary.

  • noun The ornament rising above the stern of ancient ships.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English.

  • noun (Rom. Antiq.) An ornamental appendage of wood at the ship's stern, usually spreading like a fan and curved like a bird's feather.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

  • noun obsolete, nautical An ornamental appendage of wood at the stern of a Roman ship, usually spreading like a fan and curved like a bird's feather.


Sorry, no etymologies found.


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  • Some linguists link fenestra with Gk. verb phainein “to show;” others see in it an Etruscan borrowing, based on the suffix -stra, as in L. loan-words aplustre “the carved stern of a ship with its ornaments,” genista “the plant broom,” lanista “trainer of gladiators.”

    Minimalist Christmas Update «

  • Lifting his eyes from the solarium set under the aplustre for reference in keeping the course, Arrius beheld the rower approaching.

    Ben-Hur, a tale of the Christ

  • At length he tossed the loosened folds of his toga in the air; in reply to the signal, over the aplustre, or fan-like fixture at the stern of the vessel, a scarlet flag was displayed; while several sailors appeared upon the bulwarks, and swung themselves hand over hand up the ropes to the antenna, or yard, and furled the sail.

    Ben-Hur, a tale of the Christ

  • The movement brought the stern to view, with all its garniture-Tritons like those at the bow; name in large raised letters; the rudder at the side; the elevated platform upon which the helmsman sat, a stately figure in full armour, his hand upon the rudder-rope; and the aplustre, high, gilt, carved, and bent over the helmsman like a great runcinate leaf.

    Ben-Hur, a tale of the Christ

  • As he stepped upon the bridge the trumpets sounded, and over the aplustre rose the vexillum purpureum, or pennant of a commander of a fleet.

    Ben-Hur, a tale of the Christ

  • About two hours later Arrius stood under the aplustre of the galley; in the mood of one who, seeing himself carried swiftly towards an event of mighty import, has nothing to do but wait-the mood in which philosophy vests an even-minded man with the utmost calm, and is ever so serviceable.

    Ben-Hur, a tale of the Christ

  • Over the stern, where the aplustre cast its shadow in ordinary crafts, there was a pavilion-like structure, high-raised, flat-roofed, and with small round windows in the sides.

    The Prince of India — Volume 02


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  • Now fitful and ill-omened gusts stir

    The sails that once swelled with his bluster.

    The ship of state drifts

    And fades in the mists

    From bowsprit to drooping aplustre.

    February 27, 2019