[stur-uhp, stir-, stuhr-]
a loop, ring, or other contrivance of metal, wood, leather, etc., suspended from the saddle of a horse to support the rider's foot.
any of various similar supports or clamps used for special purposes.
Nautical. a short rope with an eye at the end hung from a yard to support a footrope, the footrope being rove through the eye.
Also called binder. (in reinforced-concrete constructions) a U -shaped or W -shaped bent rod for supporting longitudinal reinforcing rods.
Anatomy, stapes.
a strap of fabric or elastic at the bottom of a pair of pants, worn around and under the foot.
stirrups, (used with a plural verb) close-fitting knit pants with such straps.

before 1000; Middle English; Old English stigrāp (stige ascent + rāp rope); cognate with German Stegreif

stirrupless, adjective
stirruplike, adjective Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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World English Dictionary
stirrup (ˈstɪrəp)
1.  Also called: stirrup iron either of two metal loops on a riding saddle, with a flat footpiece through which a rider puts his foot for support. They are attached to the saddle by stirrup leathers
2.  a U-shaped support or clamp made of metal, wood, leather, etc
3.  nautical one of a set of ropes fastened to a yard at one end and having a thimble at the other through which a footrope is rove for support
4.  the usual US name for étrier
[Old English stigrāp, from stīg path, step (related to Old High German stīgan to move up) + rāprope; related to Old Norse stigreip, Old High German stegareif]

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009
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Word Origin & History

O.E. stigrap, lit. "climbing rope," from stige "a climbing, ascent" (from P.Gmc. *stigaz "climbing;" see stair) + rap (see rope). Originally a looped rope as a help for mounting. Gmc. cognates include O.N. stigreip, O.H.G. stegareif, Ger. stegreif.
Surgical device used in childbirth, etc., so called from 1884. Stirrup-cup (1681) was a cup of wine or other drink handed to a man already on horseback and setting out on a journey, hence "a parting glass" (cf. Fr. le vin de l'etrier).
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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American Heritage
Medical Dictionary

stirrup stir·rup (stûr'əp, stĭr'-)
See stapes.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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Encyclopedia Britannica


either of a pair of light frames hung from the saddle attached to the back of an animal-usually a horse or pony. Stirrups are used to support a rider's feet in riding and to aid in mounting. Stirrups probably originated in the Asian steppes about the 2nd century BC. They enormously increased the military value of the horse

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Encyclopedia Britannica, 2008. Encyclopedia Britannica Online.
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Example sentences
Stirrup and duct ties are to be provided if required for containment of tendons.
Electrically connect all stirrup bars, strands, all longitudinal bars and
  structural continuity bars at the bridge site.
The hammer and the stirrup are common names for two out of the three small
  bones in our inner ears.
It all came back to him with a rush when he found himself alone with these
  heroes of the rope and the stirrup.
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