: one that serves as an inspiration, model, or guide
Did You Know?
The literal, albeit archaic, meaning of lodestar is "a star that leads or guides," and it is a term that has been used especially in reference to the North Star. (The first half of the word derives from the Middle English word lode, meaning "course.") Both the literal and the figurative sense ("an inspiration or guide") date back to the 14th century, the time of Geoffrey Chaucer. The literal sense fell out of use in the 17th century for the most part, and so, for a while, did the figurative sense—but it appeared again 170 years later, when Sir Walter Scott used it in his 1813 poem The Bridal of Triermain.
"Tisvilde, on Zealand's north coast, stands out as a lodestar for the city's creative set, ever since two of those historic hotels, the Helenkilde Badehotel and Tisvilde Strandhotel, were tastefully renovated a decade ago by the former Royal Danish Ballet principal Alexander Kølpin." — Alex Postman, Condé Nast Traveler, March/April 2012
"I had to spend hours preparing to be half as good as Charles. I'm still working on it. Even before I knew him, he was my lodestar—and he always will be." — Marc A. Thiessen, The Washington Post, 13 June 2018
Test Your Vocabulary with M-W Quizzes
Test Your Vocabulary
Unscramble the letters to create a name for the North Star: NSOYUCER.VIEW THE ANSWER
Theme music by Joshua Stamper ©2006 New Jerusalem Music/ASCAP