See also: barley sugar


Barley-sugar pillars ("twisted helically")


barley-sugar (countable and uncountable, plural barley-sugars)

  1. attributive form of barley sugar


barley-sugar (comparative more barley-sugar, superlative most barley-sugar)

  1. very sweet; harmless.
    • c. 1800, Anne Isabella Byron, quoted in Malcolm Elwin, Lord Byron's wife
      I shall write to you tomorrow on a subject which I have not now time to discuss. This I declare now because I like to excite your curiosity, and to delay gratifying it. I am a sweet chicken ! ! ! You ought to think me the most barley-sugar daughter in the creation!
    • 1824, John Scott, John Taylor, The London Magazine, page 126
      In the apartment of the Abate a few pictures remain, but none of first order : one or two Carlo Dolces served to strengthen our opinion of his being one of the most barley-sugar painters of the Italian schools.
    • 1851, The New monthly belle assemblée, page 292
      Well, the little dog barked on furiously, that is for a barley-sugar dog; and, after rolling themselves in the grass to get rid of the load of jam and cream on their clothes, they managed to get up and run on.
  2. twisted helically.
    • 1935, Anthony Bertram, The House: A Machine for Living In; a Summary of the Art and Science of Homemaking Considered Functionally:
      Chair-backs were very straight and no time was wasted on carving. This severe discipline prepared English craftsmen for their great period. After a slight relapse under Charles II into rather frivolous forms — very barley-sugar, but discreet []
    • 1963, Radio Astronomy
      Suppose that, initially, the barley-sugar aerials are twisted in such a sense that the polar diagram of each has its maximum north of the zenith.
    • 1988, Robert Milburn, Early Christian Art and Architecture, Univ of California Press →ISBN, page 95
      The barley-sugar columns, carved in spiral channels with alternating bands of vine ornament, exist to this day though moved from their original site.
    • 2008, John Mortimer, Summer's Lease, Penguin UK →ISBN
      So they left the remains of Fosdyke and walked across the road and through the old church, restored in the eighteenth century, which had barley-sugar pillars and theatrical red curtains backlit by the sun.
    • 2012, Jane Beck, For Better For Worse, Troubador Publishing Ltd →ISBN
      Kate's living room was simply furnished with a large damask-covered sofa that had seen better days, a folding table with barley sugar legs and a couple of upright chairs.