- a rope, cord, strap, etc., usually with a headstall, for tying or leading an animal
- a bitless headstall, with or without a lead rope
- a rope for hanging a person; hangman's noose
- execution by hanging
- a garment for covering the breast, held up by a cord or loop around the neck, and worn by women and girls to bare the shoulders and back
Origin of halterMiddle English ; from Old English hælftre (akin to German halfter) ; from base of helfe (see helve): basic sense “that by which something is held”
- to put a halter on (an animal); tie with a halter
- to hang (a person)
Origin of halterModern Latin ; from Classical Latin lead weights ; from Classical Greek haltēr, weight held (to give impetus) in leaping ; from hallesthai, to leap ; from Indo-European base an unverified form sel- from source Classical Latin salire
- A device made of rope or straps that fits around the head of an animal and is used to lead or secure the animal.
- a. A rope with a noose used for execution by hanging.b. Death or execution by hanging.
- A halter-top.
transitive verbhal·tered, hal·ter·ing, hal·ters
- To put a halter on.
- To control with or as if with a halter.
- To hang (someone).
Origin of halterMiddle English, from Old English hælftre.
Origin of halterLatin haltēr, lead weights used in leaping exercises, from sing. of Greek haltēres, from hallesthai, to jump; see sel- in Indo-European roots.
- A bitless headpiece of rope or straps, placed on the head of animals such as cattle or horses to lead or tie them.
- A rope with a noose, for hanging criminals; the gallows rope.
- A woman's garment covering the upper chest, a halter top.
(third-person singular simple present halters, present participle haltering, simple past and past participle haltered)
- To place a halter on.
- What do you mean, you didn't halter the horses when we stopped for the night?
From Middle English halter, helter, helfter, from Old English hælfter, hælftre (“halter”), from Proto-Germanic *halftrō, *halftrijaz (“harness”), from Proto-Indo-European *(s)kel- (“to cut”), equivalent to half- + -ter. Cognate with Scots helter (“halter”), Dutch halfter, halster (“halter”), Low German halfter, helchter, halter (“halter”), German Halfter (“halter, holster”).