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[hos-ler, os-ler] /ˈhɒs lər, ˈɒs lər/
a person who takes care of horses, especially at an inn.
an employee who moves and services trains, buses, or other vehicles after their regular runs or who does the maintenance work on large machines.
Origin of hostler
1350-1400; Middle English; variant of hosteler
Related forms
hostlership, noun Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for hostler
Historical Examples
  • He had a factotum named Charley Breen who was his valet, cook, hostler and assistant surveyor.

  • He was just about to step in, when the hostler came out, so they met at the door.

    What the Moon Saw: and Other Tales Hans Christian Andersen
  • Even the obtuse faculties of the hostler had been drilled into knowing nothing of any other auberge in the town but his own.

    Richelieu, v. 3/3 G. P. R. James
  • He seemed in a very bad temper, and abused the hostler, though I could not tell what for.

    Black Beauty Anna Sewell
  • He would then have time to get back and mount his horse—which he told the hostler to keep saddled—and follow her.

    Won from the Waves W.H.G. Kingston
  • Goatry, who had handed the horse over to the hostler, watched them coming.

    Northern Lights Gilbert Parker
  • The same kind of waiter was there, a dish-thrower with the manners of a hostler.

    We Can't Have Everything Rupert Hughes
  • "He seems like he were a part of the horse," declared the hostler, admiringly.

    Frank Merriwell's Races Burt L. Standish
  • An hostler—a tapster—and a constable, courted her at the same time, and I offered to cudgel the whole three of them for her!

    The Hunchback James Sheridan Knowles
  • He had heard the hostler whisper, and he caught Frank's question.

    Frank Merriwell's Races Burt L. Standish
British Dictionary definitions for hostler


another name (esp Brit) for ostler
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for hostler

late 14c., "one who tends to horses at an inn," also, occasionally, "innkeeper," from Anglo-French hostiler, Old French hostelier "innkeeper, steward" (12c., Modern French hôtelier), from Medieval Latin hostilarius "the monk who entertains guests at a monastery," from hospitale "inn" (see hospital). See also ostler.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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