Pulley definition

po͝olē
Frequency:
A wheel that turns or is turned by a belt, rope, chain, etc., so as to transmit power.
noun
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13
A small fixed wheel, sometimes turning in a block, with a grooved rim in which a rope or chain runs, as to raise a weight attached at one end by pulling on the other end: it changes the direction of effort but provides no mechanical advantage.
noun
33
17
A wheel turned by or driving a belt.
noun
29
13
A simple machine consisting essentially of a wheel with a grooved rim in which a pulled rope or chain can run to change the direction of the pull and thereby lift a load.
noun
18
12
A machine consisting of a wheel over which a pulled rope or chain runs to change the direction of the pull used for lifting a load. Combinations of two or more pulleys working together reduce the force needed to lift a load.
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The definition of a pulley is a small fixed wheel or a group of such wheels with a rope or chain in a grooved rim that is used to lift something up.

An example of a pulley is a device for raising a flag.

noun
2
1
To raise or lift by means of a pulley.

verb
2
1
A combination of such wheels, used to increase the mechanical advantage.
noun
7
7
One of the simple machines; a wheel with a grooved rim in which a pulled rope or chain will lift an object (more useful when two or more pulleys are used together such that a small force moving through a greater distance can exert a larger force through a smaller distance).
noun
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2

Other Word Forms

Noun

Singular:
pulley
Plural:
pulleys

Origin of pulley

  • Middle English poley from Old French polie and from Medieval Latin poliva both ultimately from Greek polos axis kwel-1 in Indo-European roots

    From American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition

  • From Middle English polley, pullie, from Old French poulie, polie (“a pulley"), (compare Medieval Latin polea, polegia, polegium; Middle Dutch puleye), of Germanic origin, from or related to Middle Low German pulen (“to pull"), Old English pullian (“to pull") . More at pull.

    From Wiktionary