Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition.

  • noun A small low bed for an infant, often furnished with rockers.
  • noun The earliest period of life.
  • noun A place of origin; a birthplace.
  • noun A framework of wood or metal used to support something, such as a ship undergoing construction or repair.
  • noun A framework used to protect an injured limb.
  • noun A low flat framework that rolls on casters, used by a mechanic working beneath an automobile.
  • noun The part of a telephone that contains the connecting switch upon which the receiver and mouthpiece unit is supported.
  • noun A frame projecting above a scythe, used to catch grain as it is cut so that it can be laid flat.
  • noun A scythe equipped with such a frame.
  • noun A boxlike device furnished with rockers, used for washing gold-bearing dirt.
  • transitive verb To place or retain in a cradle.
  • transitive verb To care for or nurture in infancy.
  • transitive verb To hold or support protectively.
  • transitive verb Sports In hockey, to keep possession of (the puck) by moving the stick back and forth to prevent the puck from sliding away.
  • transitive verb Sports In lacrosse, to keep possession of (the ball) by moving the stick back and forth to prevent the ball from falling to the ground or resting too low in the webbing for easy release.
  • transitive verb To reap (grain) with a cradle.
  • transitive verb To place or support (a ship, for example) in a cradle.
  • transitive verb To wash (gold-bearing dirt) in a cradle.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • noun A little bed or cot for an infant, usually mounted on rockers, or balanced or suspended in such a manner as to admit of a rocking or swinging motion.
  • noun Hence The place where any person or thing is nurtured in the earlier stage of existence: as, Asia, the cradle of the human race; the cradle of liberty, etc.
  • noun A standing bedstead for wounded seamen.
  • noun A name of various mechanical contrivances.
  • noun An old game played by children: same as cat's-cradle.
  • To reinforce on the back with crossed strips in order to prevent warping: as, to cradle a picture.
  • To support on or in a cradle: as, to cradle a ship while it is being raised to a higher level.
  • To cut (a cask) in two longitudinally.
  • To place or rock in a cradle; quiet by or as if by rocking.
  • To nurse in infancy.
  • To cut with a cradle, as grain.
  • To wash in a miners' cradle, as auriferous gravel.
  • To lie in or as if in a cradle.

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

  • transitive verb To lay to rest, or rock, as in a cradle; to lull or quiet, as by rocking.
  • transitive verb To nurse or train in infancy.
  • transitive verb To cut and lay with a cradle, as grain.
  • transitive verb To transport a vessel by means of a cradle.
  • transitive verb to put ribs across the back of a picture, to prevent the panels from warping.
  • intransitive verb To lie or lodge, as in a cradle.
  • noun A bed or cot for a baby, oscillating on rockers or swinging on pivots; hence, the place of origin, or in which anything is nurtured or protected in the earlier period of existence.
  • noun Infancy, or very early life.
  • noun (Agric.) An implement consisting of a broad scythe for cutting grain, with a set of long fingers parallel to the scythe, designed to receive the grain, and to lay it evenly in a swath.
  • noun (Engraving) A tool used in mezzotint engraving, which, by a rocking motion, raises burrs on the surface of the plate, so preparing the ground.
  • noun A framework of timbers, or iron bars, moving upon ways or rollers, used to support, lift, or carry ships or other vessels, heavy guns, etc., as up an inclined plane, or across a strip of land, or in launching a ship.
  • noun A case for a broken or dislocated limb.
  • noun A frame to keep the bedclothes from contact with the person.

Etymologies

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

[Middle English cradel, from Old English.]

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

From Old English cradol.

Examples

  • Earlier this year, his materials firm, MBDC, told GreenBlue it would have to license the term cradle to cradle if the nonprofit wanted to use it.

    Techdirt

  • Indeed, some have argued that the [GreenBlue's Sustainable Packaging Coalition] is succeeding despite McDonough: Earlier this year, his materials firm, MBDC, told GreenBlue it would have to license the term cradle to cradle if the nonprofit wanted to use it.

    Grist - the Latest from Grist

  • We're at a point in our history, with 6.4 billion of us, that we have to imagine what it would be like to redesign design itself, see design as the first signal of human intention, and realize that we need new intentions for our future where materials are seen as things that are highly valuable and need to go in closed cycles — what we call cradle to cradle, instead of cradle to grave.

    The Man of the Hour

  • And so, as long as the cradle is there to be minded, we shall have proved that out of two differences unions can spring.

    Martin Pippin in the Apple Orchard

  • And so, as long as the cradle is there to be minded, we shall have proved that out of two differences unions can spring.

    Martin Pippin in the Apple Orchard

  • And in this cradle is a nice, fat, bright-eyed little baby.

    Little Miss Peggy: Only a Nursery Story

  • An often overlooked facet of the Battle of the Alamo was the inclusive nature of those who volunteered to defend what we know as the cradle of Texas liberty.

    Capitol Annex

  • Lake Turkana, thanks to its extensive fossil record of early humans, is often described as the cradle of mankind; our closest literal equivalent to the Garden of Eden.

    Journey to the Jade Sea

  • The cradle is equipped with a warmer and an alarm that goes off when a baby is deposited.

    Japan Approves First ‘Baby Hatch’ | Impact Lab

  • Beyond the doll, a book and a trio of wooden figures (princess, baby in cradle and a motherly market woman) are her only birthday gifts this year.

    A Small Gift for a Small Girl

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