tres·​tle | \ ˈtre-səl How to pronounce trestle (audio) also ˈtrə- How to pronounce trestle (audio) \
variants: or less commonly tressel

Definition of trestle

1 : a braced frame serving as a support
3 : a braced framework of timbers, piles, or steelwork for carrying a road or railroad over a depression

Examples of trestle in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web The tunnel was underneath a railroad trestle which, at the time, was still operating. Veronica Fulton, NBC News, 24 July 2022 Freeman expects the freeway and a wooden train trestle that caught fire to be inspected for damage. Nathan Solis, Los Angeles Times, 11 July 2022 At the time, California’s Department of Water Resources believed the flooding might have been confined to just half of the island, but the Burlington Northern Santa Fe Railroad refused its request to block an opening under a trestle. David Owen, The New Yorker, 11 May 2022 The film's previously seen snowy locale is now a mess of surface-to-air missiles, with pilots requiring evasive maneuvers like a tight roll beneath a stone trestle bridge. Sam Machkovech, Ars Technica, 29 Mar. 2022 Lately, Saint-Lazare has been making wooden furniture — a simple bench for the foot of a bed; a matching trestle upon which to fling clothes; boxy stools — that adds touches of warmth and life. New York Times, 16 Feb. 2022 The 100-year-old wooden trestle will be replaced by a wider, higher, concrete bridge that will be less likely to flood and less of an impediment to the flow of the San Dieguito River. Phil Diehl, San Diego Union-Tribune, 31 Jan. 2022 Likewise, a sequence in which the trio and a trainload of passengers traverse Italy, until a trestle very close to collapse interrupts their journey. John Anderson, WSJ, 30 Dec. 2021 Brown is a fan of the Eddy’s floating wooden trestle-style legs. Washington Post, 27 Sep. 2021 See More

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

First Known Use of trestle

13th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for trestle

Middle English trestel, from Anglo-French, from Vulgar Latin *trastellum, from Latin transtillum, diminutive of transtrum traverse beam, from trans across — more at through entry 1

Learn More About trestle

Time Traveler for trestle

Time Traveler

The first known use of trestle was in the 13th century

See more words from the same century

Dictionary Entries Near trestle



trestle bent

See More Nearby Entries 

Statistics for trestle

Last Updated

2 Aug 2022

Cite this Entry

“Trestle.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 10 Aug. 2022.

Style: MLA
MLACheck Mark Icon ChicagoCheck Mark Icon APACheck Mark Icon Merriam-WebsterCheck Mark Icon

More Definitions for trestle


tres·​tle | \ ˈtre-səl How to pronounce trestle (audio) \

Kids Definition of trestle

1 : a braced frame consisting usually of a horizontal piece with spreading legs at each end that supports something (as the top of a table)
2 : a structure of timbers or steel for supporting a road or railroad over a low place

More from Merriam-Webster on trestle

Nglish: Translation of trestle for Spanish Speakers

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


Test Your Vocabulary

Challenging Words You Should Know

  • hedgehog reading a book
  • Often used to describe “the march of time,” what does inexorable mean?
How Strong Is Your Vocabulary?

Test your vocabulary with our 10-question quiz!

Universal Daily Crossword

A daily challenge for crossword fanatics.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

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