py·lon | \ˈpī-ˌlän, -lən\

Definition of pylon 

1a : a usually massive gateway

b : an ancient Egyptian gateway building in a truncated pyramidal form

c : a monumental mass flanking an entranceway or an approach to a bridge

2a chiefly British : a tower for supporting either end of usually a number of wires over a long span

b : any of various towerlike structures

3a : a post or tower marking a prescribed course of flight for an airplane

b : traffic cone

c : one of the flexible upright markers positioned on a football field at the corners of the end zone

4 : a rigid structure on the outside of an aircraft for supporting something (such as an engine or missile) — see airplane illustration

Illustration of pylon

Illustration of pylon

pylon 1b

Examples of pylon in a Sentence

The bridge is supported by concrete pylons. a row of electricity pylons

Recent Examples on the Web

The ball went up, a back-shoulder fade toward the front pylon. Chris Solari, Detroit Free Press, "Michigan State QB Brian Lewerke working to create 'two-headed monster'," 18 Apr. 2018 But the pylon had not yet been erected, so any cables being tightened Thursday were likely wires that, according to design documents submitted as part of the winning proposal, run through the 30-foot-wide, 950-ton span that fell. David Smiley, Alex Daugherty And Douglas Hanks, miamiherald, "Rubio says engineers were tightening loose cables when the FIU bridge collapsed | Miami Herald," 16 Mar. 2018 And both sides will have bicycles lanes that are separated from motor vehicles by traffic pylons. Adam Vaccaro,, "After years of reconstruction, Longfellow Bridge reopened 5 a.m. Thursday," 31 May 2018 The 10-yarder that put Wekiva up 12-7 came when Boles escaped defenders and threw to Garrett just inside the right pylon in the third quarter., "Wekiva rallies past Dr. Phillips to reach flag football state tournament," 8 May 2018 The current pylons on the B-52H heavy strategic bomber are the original ones designed into the plane in the late 1950s and rated only to 5,000 pound bombs. Kyle Mizokami, Popular Mechanics, "B-52 Bombers Could Quadruple Their Wing Bomb Loads," 25 June 2018 The Raiders cut Hackenberg last week, three weeks after the Jets traded him for not much more than a bag of pylons. Albert Breer,, "For Andrew Luck, It All Re-Starts Here," 18 June 2018 Bell-Boeing designed a special pylon on the side of the aircraft to ensure common weapons carriage. Kris Osborn, Fox News, "Marine Corps arms Osprey with rockets and missiles - adds assault missions," 6 July 2018 All left neatly on a concrete pylon at the edge of the bridge that carries North Street over the Pike. Mark Arsenault,, "Secrets of a Lost Girl," 24 June 2018

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

See More

First Known Use of pylon

1817, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for pylon

Greek pylōn, from pylē gate

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about pylon

Dictionary Entries near pylon





pylon antenna



Statistics for pylon

Last Updated

17 Oct 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for pylon

The first known use of pylon was in 1817

See more words from the same year

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for pylon



English Language Learners Definition of pylon

: a tall tower or similar structure

: a tall, metal structure that is part of a series of structures supporting a long stretch of electrical wire

American football : one of the upright markers that are positioned at the corners of the end zone


py·lon | \ˈpī-ˌlän, -lən \

Medical Definition of pylon 

: a simple temporary artificial leg

Keep scrolling for more

Comments on pylon

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


to reject or criticize sharply

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Words from Greek and Roman Mythology Quiz

  • the-triumph-of-venus-by-alessandro-magnasco
  • Boreal comes from the name of the ancient Greek god of which wind?
True or False

Test your knowledge - and maybe learn something along the way.

Word Winder's CrossWinder

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.


Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!