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Definition of bolster:

  1. A block of wood on the carriage of a siege gun, upon which the breech of the gun rests when arranged for transportation.
  2. A cushioned or a piece of soft wood covered with tarred canvas, placed on the trestletrees and against the mast, for the collars of the shrouds to rest on, to prevent chafing.
  3. A cushioned or a piece part of a saddle.
  4. A long pillow or cushion, used to support the head of a person lying on a bed; - generally laid under the pillows.
  5. A pad, quilt, or anything used to hinder pressure, support any part of the body, or make a bandage sit easy upon a wounded part; a compress.
  6. A plate of iron or a mass of wood under the end of a bridge girder, to keep the girder from resting directly on the abutment.
  7. A transverse bar above the axle of a wagon, on which the bed or body rests.
  8. Anything arranged to act as a support, as in various forms of mechanism, etc.
  9. Anything used to prevent chafing.
  10. That part of a knife blade which abuts upon the end of the handle.
  11. The crossbeam forming the bearing piece of the body of a railway car; the central and principal cross beam of a car truck.
  12. The metallic end of a pocketknife handle.
  13. the perforated plate in a punching machine on which anything rests when being punched.
  14. The rolls forming the ends or sides of the Ionic capital.
  15. To support with a bolster or pillow.
  16. To support, hold up, or maintain with difficulty or unusual effort; - often with up.

Synonyms:

slog, reinforce, dramatise, substantiate, stiffen, brace, sustain, embroider, undergird, afghan, sharpen, stay, aggrandise, intensify, canopy, fill out, bolster up, corroborate, carry, bedding, embellish, pad, blow up, comforter, sustain, blanket, shore, invigorate, dramatize, counterpane, hold up, trudge, bear, tramp, bedlinen, harden, footslog, bedspread, long pillow, help, lard, toughen, plod, aggrandize, support, bedclothes, strengthen.

Usage examples: