- a long, narrow boat for a few passengers used on the canals of Venice, having a high, pointed prow and stern and propelled by a single long oar at the stern
- a flat-bottomed river barge
- a railroad freight car with no top and, often, with low sidesalso gondola car
- a cabin suspended under an airship or balloon, for holding the motors, instruments, passengers, etc.
- a car suspended from and moved along a cable, for holding passengers
- a car for riders on a Ferris wheel or other amusement-park ride
Origin of gondolaItalian (Venetian) from Rhaeto-Romanic (dial.) gondolá, to rock
- Nautical a. A lightweight narrow barge with ends that curve up into a point, propelled with a single oar from the stern and used on the canals of Venice.b. A flatbottom riverboat.
- A gondola car.
- A basket, enclosure, or instrument sling suspended from and carried aloft by a balloon.
- An enclosed structure suspended from a cable, used for conveying passengers, as to and from a ski slope.
Origin of gondolaItalian, of Venetian origin alteration ( probably influenced by -ola feminine diminutive suffix ) ( or by Italian dialectal words akin to Italian dondolare to rock back and forth ) of Old Venetian condura from Medieval Greek kontoura, kondoura a kind of small boat (probably so called from a distinctive high or wide stern) from feminine of kontouros having a docked tail Late Greek kontos short ( probably back-formed from konto- taken as meaning “short” ) ( in such compounds as Greek kontokunēgesion a hunt using pikes ) ( or kontobolein to strike with a pole (that is, at short range, not with arrows or javelins) ) ( stem of Greek kontos pike, pole )Greek ourā tail ; see ors- in Indo-European roots.
top: on the Grand Canal
bottom: cable car at Mount Teide National Park
Tenerife, Canary Islands
- A small long, narrow boat with a high prow and stern, propelled with a single oar, especially in Venice.
- A hanging platform or car for transporting people or cargo.
- An enclosed car attached to a cable mechanically lifted up the side of a mountain; an enclosed ski lift; a cable car.
- The car or basket of a hot-air balloon, airship, zeppelin, etc.
- The hanging cart in which a glass-cleaning worker stands to clean exterior glass on tall buildings.
- That part of a transporter bridge that carries passengers, vehicles, along the length of the bridge span.
- (rail transport) A type of open railway car with low sides, used to carry heavy freight such as crushed rock or steel.
- A free-standing shelving unit in a supermarket.
From Venetian, which likely derives from Byzantine Greek κοντούρα (kontoura, “small tail”).