hos·​tler ˈhä-slər How to pronounce hostler (audio)
variants or less commonly ostler
: one who takes care of horses or mules
: one who moves locomotives in and out of a roundhouse
also : one who services locomotives

Examples of hostler in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web More than halfway through the film, Manny and Buck discover a formerly napping hostler, Sara. David Reamer, Anchorage Daily News, 12 Apr. 2021 Harris, who had worked as a hostler for the county sheriff, was arrested a short time later and taken to the jail on Main Street in Bel Air. David Anderson, The Aegis, 16 May 2017

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'hostler.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History


Middle English hostiller, osteler "innkeeper, servant at an inn attending horses, person keeping horses for hire" — more at hosteler

First Known Use

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of hostler was in the 14th century

Dictionary Entries Near hostler

Cite this Entry

“Hostler.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 20 Jul. 2024.

Kids Definition


hos·​tler ˈäs-lər How to pronounce hostler (audio)
variants also ostler
: one who takes care of horses or mules
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