Pestle

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Dictionary Meaning and Definition on 'Pestle'

Pestle Meaning and Definition from WordNet (r) 2.0
    pestle n
  1. machine consisting of a heavy bar that moves vertically for pounding or crushing ores [syn: stamp]
  2. a heavy tool of stone or iron (usually with a flat base and a handle) that is used to grind and mix material (as grain or drugs or pigments) against a slab of stone [syn: muller, pounder]
  3. a club-shaped hand tool for grinding and mixing substances in a mortar v : grind or pulverize in a pestle
Pestle Meaning and Definition from Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary (1913)
    Pestle \Pes"tle\, n. [OE. pestel, OF. pestel, LL. pestellum, L. pistillum, pistillus, a pounder, pestle, fr. pisere, pinsere, to pound, crush, akin to Gr. ?, Skr. pish. Cf. Pistil.]
  1. An implement for pounding and breaking or braying substances in a mortar.
  2. A constable's or bailiff's staff; -- so called from its shape. [Obs.] --Chapman.
  3. The leg and leg bone of an animal, especially of a pig; as, a pestle of pork.
Pestle Meaning and Definition from Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary (1913)
    Pestle \Pes"tle\, v. t. & i. [imp. & p. p. Pestled; p. pr. & vb. n. Pestling.] To pound, pulverize, bray, or mix with a pestle, or as with a pestle; to use a pestle.
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Wikipedia Meaning and Definition on 'Pestle'


A mortar and pestle is a tool used to crush, grind, and mix solid substances (trituration). The pestle is a heavy bat-shaped object, the end of which is used for crushing and grinding. The mortar is a bowl, typically made of hard wood, ceramic or stone. The substance to be ground is placed in the mortar and ground, crushed or mixed with the pestle.

The English word mortar derives from classical Latin mortarium, meaning, among several other usages, "receptacle for pounding" and "product of grinding or pounding". The classical Latin pistillum, meaning "pounder", led to English pestle. The Roman poet Juvenal applied both mortarium and pistillum to articles used in the preparation of drugs, reflecting the early use of the mortar and pestle as a pharmacist's or apothecary's symbol.

Mortars and pestles were traditionally used in pharmacies to crush various ingredients prior to preparing an extemporaneous prescription. The mortar and pestle, along with the Rod of Asclepius, the Green Cross, and others, is one of the most pervasive symbols of pharmacology, along with the show globe. For pharmaceutical use, the mortar and the head of the pestle are usually made of porcelain, while the handle of the pestle is made of wood. This is known as a Wedgwood mortar and pestle and originated in 1779. Today the act of mixing ingredients or reducing the particle size is known as trituration. Mortars and pestles are also used as drug paraphernalia to grind up pills to speed up absorption when they are ingested, or in preparation for insufflation.

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Pestle Sample Sentences in News


  • Housekeeper, three others face trial over theft
    A complainant, Mrs Ada Akwiwu, on Monday told a Surulere Chief Magistrates’ Court, Lagos, how her housekeeper with three others broke into her house with a pestle and stole valuables worth N995,000. The housekeeper, Blessing Olawaya, 20, was alleged to have stolen items such as jewellery, a canon digital camera and clothes. “I came home...  [Read More...] Read more on this news related to 'Pestle'
  • Vitamin B3 Might Have Been Made in Space, Delivered to Earth by Meteorites
    Karen Smith crushing meteorites with a mortar and pestle in Goddard's Astrobiology Analytical Laboratory to prepare them for analysis. Vitamin B3 was found in all eight meteorites analyzed in the study. Image courtesy Karen Smith. Read more on this news related to 'Pestle'
  • Unique 100-day exhibition to depict world history
    Abu Dhabi, March 27 (IANS/WAM) From the Chinese Jade Hair Ornament to the Bird-shaped Pestle from Papua New Guinea, 100 objects depicting world history will be displayed in a unique 100-day exhibition, starting next month, to be held in Abu Dhabi, the capital of the United Arab Emirates (UAE). Being organised by Tourist and Cultural Authority (TCA) Abu Dhabi, the Read more on this news related to 'Pestle'

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