noun pil·lar \ˈpi-lər\

: a large post that helps to hold up something (such as a roof)

: someone who is an important member of a group

: a basic fact, idea, or principle of something

Full Definition of PILLAR

a :  a firm upright support for a superstructure :  post
b :  a usually ornamental column or shaft; especially :  one standing alone for a monument
a :  a supporting, integral, or upstanding member or part <a pillar of society>
b :  a fundamental precept <the five pillars of Islam>
:  a solid mass of coal, rock, or ore left standing to support a mine roof
:  a body part that resembles a column
pil·lar·less adjective
from pillar to post
:  from one place or one predicament to another

Examples of PILLAR

  1. <the ancient Greek temple boasted graceful marble pillars with richly ornamented tops>
  2. <my father has been my pillar throughout this crisis>

Origin of PILLAR

Middle English piler, from Anglo-French, from Medieval Latin pilare, from Latin pila
First Known Use: 13th century

Other Building Terms

batten, cistern, hearth, lath, transom, wainscot



Definition of PILLAR

transitive verb
:  to provide or strengthen with or as if with pillars

First Known Use of PILLAR


Other Architecture Terms

buttress, casita, cornice, fanlight, garret, lintel, parapet, pilaster, plinth
PILLAR Defined for Kids


noun pil·lar \ˈpi-lər\

Definition of PILLAR for Kids

:  a large post that supports something (as a roof)
:  a single column built as a monument
:  a supporting or important member or part <He was a pillar of society.>
:  something that resembles a column in shape <pillars of smoke>
Medical Dictionary


noun pil·lar \ˈpil-ər\

Medical Definition of PILLAR

:  a body part likened to a pillar or column (as the margin of the external inguinal ring); specifically :  pillar of the fauces
July 29, 2015
indomitable Hear it
incapable of being subdued or conquered
Take a 3-minute break and test your skills!
How to use a word that (literally) drives some people nuts.
Test your vocab with our fun, fast game
Ailurophobia, and 9 other unusual fears