pillion

1 of 2

noun

pil·​lion ˈpil-yən How to pronounce pillion (audio)
1
a
: a light saddle for women consisting chiefly of a cushion
b
: a pad or cushion put on behind a man's saddle chiefly for a woman to ride on
2
chiefly British : a motorcycle or bicycle saddle for a passenger

pillion

2 of 2

adverb

chiefly British
: on or as if on a pillion
ride pillion

Example Sentences

Recent Examples on the Web
Noun
See your dealer for frame sliders, pillion seat cowl, Akrapovic slip-on performance exhaust, tank bag, and lower engine cowl. Joe Michaud, San Diego Union-Tribune, 14 Mar. 2021 Passenger accommodations have been made more comfortable with a wider and larger pillion perch but riding two-up will be intimate. Joe Michaud, San Diego Union-Tribune, 18 Dec. 2020 The central seating position stays, but the T.50S loses one of the flanking passenger seats; there will only be room for a single brave pillion on the left. Mike Duff, Car and Driver, 3 Sep. 2020

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

Word History

Etymology

Noun

Scots Gaelic or Irish; Scottish Gaelic pillean, diminutive of peall covering, couch; Irish pillín, diminutive of peall covering, couch

First Known Use

Noun

1503, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

Adverb

1852, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of pillion was in 1503

Dictionary Entries Near pillion

Cite this Entry

“Pillion.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/pillion. Accessed 29 Nov. 2022.

Kids Definition

pillion

noun

pil·​lion
ˈpil-yən
1
: a cushion or pad placed behind a saddle for an extra rider
2
: a saddle for a passenger on a motorcycle or bicycle
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