Friday, September 18, 2015

Word of the day: martingale

The word of the day is martingale:


  1. Also called standing martingale. part of the tack or harness of a horse, consisting of a strap that fastens to the girth, passes between the forelegs and through a loop in the neckstrap or hame, and fastens to the noseband: used to steady or hold down the horse's head.
  2. Also called running martingale. a similar device that divides at the chest into two branches, each ending in a ring through which the reins pass.
  3. Nautical. a stay for a jib boom or spike bowsprit.
  4. a system of gambling in which the stakes are doubled or otherwise raised after each loss.

"Only the horses remained, in their enormous silver-mounted saddles and their bridles and martingales whose leather was a crust of filigree and rosettes."

 - Wallace Stegner, Angle of Repose

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