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Meaning of BALLAST

Pronunciation:  'balust

WordNet Dictionary
  1. [n]  any heavy material used to stabilize a ship or airship
  2. [v]  make steady with a ballast

BALLAST is a 7 letter word that starts with B.


 See Also: brace, matter, stabilise, stabilize, steady, substance



Webster's 1913 Dictionary
  1. \Bal"last\, n. [D. ballast; akin to Dan. baglast,
    ballast, OSw. barlast, Sw. ballast. The first part is perh.
    the same word as E. bare, adj.; the second is last a burden,
    and hence the meaning a bare, or mere, load. See {Bare}, a.,
    and {Last} load.]
    1. (Naut.) Any heavy substance, as stone, iron, etc., put
       into the hold to sink a vessel in the water to such a
       depth as to prevent capsizing.
    2. Any heavy matter put into the car of a balloon to give it
    3. Gravel, broken stone, etc., laid in the bed of a railroad
       to make it firm and solid.
    4. The larger solids, as broken stone or gravel, used in
       making concrete.
    5. Fig.: That which gives, or helps to maintain, uprightness,
       steadiness, and security.
             It [piety] is the right ballast of prosperity.
    {Ballast engine}, a steam engine used in excavating and for
       digging and raising stones and gravel for ballast.
    {Ship in ballast}, a ship carring only ballast.
  2. \Bal"last\, v. t. [imp. & p. p. {Ballasted}; p. pr. &
    vb. n. {Ballasting}.]
    1. To steady, as a vessel, by putting heavy substances in the
    2. To fill in, as the bed of a railroad, with gravel, stone,
       etc., in order to make it firm and solid.
    3. To keep steady; to steady, morally.
             'T is charity must ballast the heart. --Hammond.
Thesaurus Terms
 Related Terms: balance, break bulk, break out ballast, clear for action, clear the decks, consideration, counterbalance, counterpoise, counterweight, equipoise, equivalent, firm, firm up, freeze, give-and-take, hold, immobilize, keep, lead, makeweight, nail down, offset, pin down, poise, quid pro quo, retain, sandbag, setoff, shift ballast, shoot ballast, something of value, stabilitate, stabilize, steady, stick, tit for tat, transfix, trim, trim ship, trim up, weigh down, weight, weight down, wing out ballast