stee·​ple | \ ˈstē-pəl How to pronounce steeple (audio) \

Definition of steeple

: a tall structure usually having a small spire at the top and surmounting a church tower broadly : a whole church tower

Illustration of steeple

Illustration of steeple

Other Words from steeple

steepled \ ˈstē-​pəld How to pronounce steeple (audio) \ adjective

Examples of steeple in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Coburn, the 2017 world champion, has been the top U.S. finisher in the Pre Classic steeple five times. oregonlive, 31 July 2021 Select Board member Elijah Zimmer, a member of the town’s Historic Preservation Commission, said the steeple is in excellent condition, unlike the rest of the building. From Usa Today Network And Wire Reports, USA TODAY, 30 Oct. 2021 Their little chapel was gray, pebble-dashed, with no steeple, more like a hall than a chapel. Fintan O’toole, The New York Review of Books, 18 Oct. 2021 Behind the lovers and across the lake, a huge stone church — Kirk in the Hills — holds the base of a huge stone steeple, which envelops the famous Kirk in the Hills carillon. Judy Rose, Detroit Free Press, 9 Oct. 2021 On June 19, 1952, at 4:45 p.m., a storm destroyed the St. John’s Roman Catholic Church steeple on Main Street — where the Westminster branch of the Carroll County Public Library is located today. Kevin Dayhoff,, 3 Sep. 2021 West, dressed in an all-black outfit, created the main stage as a replica of his childhood home, crowned with a steeple atop a dirt mound. Elise Brisco, USA TODAY, 27 Aug. 2021 For the first time in more than 60 years, the bells ringing from Park Street Church won’t be coming from a recording, but from a 200-year-old bell that was returned to the church’s steeple Saturday morning., 21 Aug. 2021 The brief Wheaton tornado touched ground just east of the Wheaton Public Library, 225 N. Cross St., and moved east across the Wheaton College campus, downing a steeple on the College Church in Wheaton. Josh Noel,, 10 Aug. 2021

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'steeple.' 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 steeple

before the 12th century, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for steeple

Middle English stepel, from Old English stēpel tower; akin to Old English stēap steep

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Time Traveler for steeple

Time Traveler

The first known use of steeple was before the 12th century

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Last Updated

5 Dec 2021

Cite this Entry

“Steeple.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 5 Dec. 2021.

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More Definitions for steeple



English Language Learners Definition of steeple

: a tall, pointed tower on a church


stee·​ple | \ ˈstē-pəl How to pronounce steeple (audio) \

Kids Definition of steeple

1 : a tall pointed structure usually built on top of a church tower
2 : a church tower

More from Merriam-Webster on steeple

Nglish: Translation of steeple for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of steeple for Arabic Speakers Encyclopedia article about steeple


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