bastion

noun
bas·​tion | \ ˈbas-chən How to pronounce bastion (audio) \

Definition of bastion

1 : a projecting part of a fortification a bastion at each of the fort's five corners
2 : a fortified area or position bombing island bastions
3 : stronghold sense 2 the last bastion of academic standardsAmer. Scientist

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Other Words from bastion

bastioned \ ˈbas-​chənd How to pronounce bastioned (audio) \ adjective

Did You Know?

Bastion is constructed of etymological building blocks that are very similar to those of "bastille" (a word now used as a general term for a prison, but probably best known as the name of the Parisian fortress-turned-prison stormed by an angry mob at the start of the French Revolution). The history of "bastion" can be traced through Middle French to the Old Italian verb bastire, which means "to build." "Bastille" descends from the Old Occitan verb "bastir," which also means "to build." "Bastir" and "bastire" are themselves of Germanic origin and akin to the Old High German word besten, meaning "to patch."

Examples of bastion in a Sentence

the rebel army retreated to its bastion in the mountains to regroup

Recent Examples on the Web

But his policies are a tougher sell even in this bastion of granola leftism. James Freeman, WSJ, "Has Vermont Had It with Bernienomics?," 21 Feb. 2019 Tuesday's primary will offer the first test of whether Democrats can pick up seats in that longtime conservative bastion. NBC News, "Rohrabacher faces reelection: California's most endangered Republican," 2 June 2018 One surefire way is to hop over to this bastion of Caribbean cuisine for a taste of the islands or, in the case of the juicy Belizean chicken, a taste of Central America. Michael Nagrant, RedEye Chicago, "A guide to eating your way through Chicago's South Side," 6 July 2017 Orange County, one of the original strongholds of the conservative movement, is now a liberal bastion. Charles R. Kesler, WSJ, "California Has Become the Far Left Coast," 6 Mar. 2019 In the midterm elections, Democrats won back numerous seats from Republicans, including in the longtime conservative bastion of Orange County. Matt Viser, The Seattle Times, "Trump blames California for natural disaster, adding to denunciations of strongly Democratic state," 13 Nov. 2018 Sunday’s vote accelerated the long decline of the state of Mexico as a bastion of the old politics and vote-piggy-bank PRI. Dudley Althaus, Washington Post, "A working-class suburb tells the story of Mexico’s election," 2 July 2018 While recent marketing efforts paint this Central American destination as a bastion of sustainability, dense jungle, adventure sports and pristine beaches — all true — coffee is fundamental to its citizens’ core identity. Lauren Mowery, USA TODAY, "Costa Rican coffee, from rural farms to Starbucks' visitor center," 26 June 2018 Yet in Italy the sudden ascent of the populists to power was all but unforeseen even four years ago, when Europe looked to the country as a bastion of liberal values and center-left politics. Jason Horowitz, New York Times, "Italy’s Populists Get a Green Light to Govern, in New Threat to Europe," 23 May 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'bastion.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of bastion

1562, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for bastion

borrowed from Middle French, borrowed from Italian bastione, from bastia "small quadrangular fortress" (from an Upper Italian counterpart to Tuscan bastita, from feminine past participle of bastire "to build," probably borrowed from Old Occitan bastir "to weave, build," or its Gallo-Romance ancestor) + -one, augmentative suffix (going back to Latin -ō, -ōn-, suffix of nouns denoting persons with a prominent feature) — more at bastille

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Last Updated

26 Mar 2019

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Time Traveler for bastion

The first known use of bastion was in 1562

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More Definitions for bastion

bastion

noun

English Language Learners Definition of bastion

: a place or system in which something (such as an old-fashioned idea) continues to survive

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More from Merriam-Webster on bastion

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for bastion

Spanish Central: Translation of bastion

Nglish: Translation of bastion for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of bastion for Arabic Speakers

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