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noun lode·star \ˈlōd-ˌstär\

Simple Definition of lodestar

  • : something or someone that leads or guides a person or group of people

Source: Merriam-Webster's Learner's Dictionary

Full Definition of lodestar

  1. 1 archaic :  a star that leads or guides; especially :  north star

  2. 2 :  one that serves as an inspiration, model, or guide

Examples of lodestar in a sentence

  1. The idea of public service has been a lodestar for her throughout her life.

  2. <a society seemingly with unbridled greed as its only lodestar>

Did You Know?

The literal, albeit archaic, meaning of "lodestar" is "a star that leads or guides; especially : the North Star." (The first half of the word derives from the Middle English word "lode," meaning "course.") Both the literal and the figurative sense ("an inspiration or guide") date back to the 14th century, the time of Geoffrey Chaucer. The literal sense fell out of use in the 17th century, and so, for a while, did the figurative sense - but it appeared again 170 years later, when Sir Walter Scott used it in his 1813 poem The Bridal of Triermain.

Variants of lodestar

also loadstar \ˈlōd-ˌstär\

Origin of lodestar

Middle English lode sterre, from lode course, from Old English lād

First Known Use: 14th century

Law Dictionary


noun lode·star \ˈlōd-ˌstär\

Legal Definition of lodestar

  1. :  the amount obtained by multiplying the reasonable amount of hours spent by an attorney working on a case by the reasonable hourly billing rate for purposes of calculating an award of attorney's fees

Origin of lodestar

perhaps from the notion of the lodestar as a guiding light or principle

Seen and Heard

What made you want to look up lodestar? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


to manage or play awkwardly

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