stee·ple | \ ˈstē-pəl \

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

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Other words from steeple

steepled \ˈstē-pəld \ adjective

Examples of steeple in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

From the glass walls on the second and third floor, the Holy Name steeple is a block away. Judy Rose, Detroit Free Press, "Modern addition gives this 90-year-old Birmingham home a dramatic flair," 29 June 2018 The skyline around the back of the preserve is of stately homes, church steeples and an inn. Peter Marteka,, "A Visit To Stonington's Seashore And Preserve Where Expansive Views And Connecticut History Are Showcased," 6 July 2018 Proceeds from the meal will be used to restore the 1838 steeple on Tolland Green church. Courant Community, "Community News For The Vernon Edition," 5 June 2018 Mount Dora, a town often compared to a New England village, is equally picturesque at 1,000 feet, its white church steeples peeking through an emerald-green tree canopy. Nancy Moreland, The Seattle Times, "Ready for takeoff: A nervous flyer takes on America’s Seaplane City," 3 July 2018 Toller’s church, with its slender steeple and whitewashed clapboards, evokes both a bygone era of American Christianity and a battered civic order, a small-town world of hard work, humility and faith. Paul Schrader, New York Times, "Review: ‘First Reformed’ Is an Epiphany. Ethan Hawke Is, Too.," 17 May 2018 But the centerpiece of the show is both impressive and instructive, even if it’s built on the flimsiest foundation and seems apt to topple over like an unanchored church steeple. John Anderson, WSJ, "‘Derren Brown: Miracle’ Review: Deception on the Stage and Under the Steeple," 21 June 2018 That’s no longer true: Generations of skyscrapers have grown up around it, but the spire remains the highest church steeple in the city. Christina Tkacik,, "Piano 'marathon' highlights classical music's enduring appeal," 7 May 2018 McMillen noted that during the Desert Storm operation, an American flag was hung from the steeple every day, as well. Karen Pearlman,, "Ringing of historic Lakeside bell recalls wartime ritual," 1 May 2018

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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Statistics for steeple

Last Updated

25 Aug 2018

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Time Traveler for steeple

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

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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 \

Kids Definition of steeple

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

2 : a church tower

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Comments on steeple

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


the setting in which something occurs

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