- The definition of a rudder is a moveable flat and wide piece of wood or metal used for steering or directing.
An example of a rudder is what helps an aircraft direct its course from left to right.
- a broad, flat, movable piece of wood or metal hinged vertically at the stern of a boat or ship, used for steering
- a movable piece attached to the vertical stabilizer of an aircraft, etc., used for controlling direction to the left or right
- something serving to guide, direct, or control
Origin of rudderMiddle English rother ; from OE; akin to German ruder: see row
- a. A vertically hinged plate of metal, fiberglass, or wood mounted at the stern of a ship or boat for directing its course.b. A similar structure at the tail of an aircraft, used for effecting horizontal changes in course.
- A controlling agent or influence over direction; a guide.
Origin of rudderMiddle English ruder, from Old English rōther, steering oar; see er&schwa;- in Indo-European roots.
- (nautical) An underwater vane used to steer a vessel. The rudder is controlled by means of a wheel, tiller or other apparatus (modern vessels can be controlled even with a joystick or an autopilot).
- (aeronautics) A control surface on the vertical stabilizer of a fixed-wing aircraft or an autogyro. On some craft, the entire vertical stabilizer comprises the rudder. The rudder is controlled by foot-operated control pedals.
- A riddle or sieve.
- (figuratively) That which resembles a rudder as a guide or governor; that which guides or governs the course.
Old English rōþor (“rudder”), from Proto-Germanic *rōþrą (“rudder"; literally, "paddle, instrument for rowing”), from Proto-Germanic *rōaną "to row" from Proto-Indo-European *ere-, *rē- (“to row”) + Proto-Germanic *-þrą, *-þraz, instrumental suffix. Akin to Old English rōwan (“to row”). More at rōwan, -þor.