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[tres-uh l] /ˈtrɛs əl/
a frame typically composed of a horizontal bar or beam rigidly joined or fitted at each end to the top of a transverse A-frame, used as a barrier, a transverse support for planking, etc.; horse.
Civil Engineering.
  1. one of a number of bents, having sloping sides of framework or piling, for supporting the deck or stringers of a bridge.
  2. a bridge made of these.
Origin of trestle
1300-50; Middle English trestel < Middle French, by dissimilation from Old French trestreLatin trānstrum crossbeam Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for trestle
  • The trestle legs fold, and both pieces can be stowed in the back of a closet.
  • Its members set up trestle tables at weekends in several big cities and hand out leaflets.
  • It occurred where eastbound and westbound rails overlap on a trestle.
  • In between were three rows of trestle tables with benches.
  • Those facing west will overlook a crumbling railroad trestle and more industrial landscape.
  • It is often a long, brisk, outdoor walk to a trestle stairway to board the plane.
  • They all sit down for a big feed at trestle tables set outdoors.
  • At the site, there was a wooden trestle with a large crawler crane situated in the middle of the trestle.
  • They are currently using divers to install under water bracing elements needed to support the heavy trestle loads.
  • trestle some modern steel trestles are composed of a number of girder bridge segments.
British Dictionary definitions for trestle


a framework in the form of a horizontal member supported at each end by a pair of splayed legs, used to carry scaffold boards, a table top, etc
  1. a braced structural tower-like framework of timber, metal, or reinforced concrete that is used to support a bridge or ropeway
  2. a bridge constructed of such frameworks
Word Origin
C14: from Old French trestel, ultimately from Latin trānstrumtransom
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 trestle

early 14c., "a support for something," from Old French trestel "crossbeam" (12c.), presumed to be an alteration of Latin *transtellum, diminutive of transtrum "beam, crossbar." Specific meaning "support for a bridge" is recorded from 1796.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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