1. a lightweight undergarment, worn especially by women, often partly or entirely of elastic or boned, for supporting and giving a slimmer appearance to the abdomen, hips, and buttocks.
  2. a belt, cord, sash, or the like, worn about the waist.
  3. anything that encircles, confines, or limits.
  4. Jewelry. the edge or narrow band between the upper and lower facets of a gem.
  5. Anatomy. the bony framework that unites the upper or lower extremities to the axial skeleton.
  6. Architecture. an ornamental band, especially one surrounding the shaft of a column.
  7. a ring made about a tree trunk, branch, etc., by removing a band of bark.

verb (used with object), gir·dled, gir·dling.

  1. to encircle with a belt; gird.
  2. to encompass; enclose; encircle.
  3. to move around (something or someone) in a circle.
  4. to cut away the bark and cambium in a ring around (a tree, branch, etc.).
  5. Jewelry. round1(def 49).


  1. a woman’s elastic corset covering the waist to the thigh
  2. anything that surrounds or encircles
  3. a belt or sash
  4. jewellery the outer edge of a gem
  5. anatomy any encircling structure or partSee pectoral girdle, pelvic girdle
  6. the mark left on a tree trunk after the removal of a ring of bark

verb (tr)

  1. to put a girdle on or around
  2. to surround or encircle
  3. to remove a ring of bark from (a tree or branch), thus causing it to die


  1. Scot and Northern English dialect another word for griddle

n.Old English gyrdel “belt, sash, cord about the waist,” common Germanic. (cf. Old Norse gyrðill, Swedish gördel, Old Frisian gerdel, Dutch gordel, Old High German gurtil, German Gürtel “belt”), related to Old English gyrdan “to gird” (see gird). Modern euphemistic sense of “elastic corset” first recorded 1925. The verb meaning “encircle with a girdle” is attested from 1580s. Meaning “to cut off a belt of bark around a trunk to kill a tree” is from 1660s. Related: Girdled; girdling. n.

  1. Something that encircles like a belt.
  2. An elasticized, flexible undergarment worn over the waist and hips.
  3. The pelvic or pectoral girdle.

  1. To kill a tree or woody shrub by removing or destroying a band of bark and cambium from its circumference. The plants die because the distribution of food down from the leaves (through the phloem) and sometimes the flow of water and nutrients up from the roots (through the xylem) is disrupted, and the cambium can no longer regenerate these vascular tissues to repair the damage. Unwanted trees, such as invasive or nonnative species, are often eliminated by girdling. Some plant diseases kill trees by destroying a ring of cambium and so girdling them. Gnawing animals, especially rodents, can also girdle trees.

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