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Alternative formsEdit


From roof +‎ tree.



rooftree (plural rooftrees)

  1. The primary beam of a roof, ridgepole; hence, the roof. [from 14th c.]
    • 1942, Rebecca West, Black Lamb and Grey Falcon, Canongate 2006, p. 985:
      there an Annunciation that annihilates time by showing a rooftree throw the shadow of a cross between the Virgin and the angel [...].
    • Now for me the woods may wither, now for me the rooftree fall. — Tennyson.
  2. (figuratively) A home; household.
    • 1910, ‘Saki’, "The Lost Sanjak", Reginald in Russia:
      With the idea, presumably, of inducing the doctor's wife to leave her husband's roof-tree for some habitation which would be run at my expense, I had crammed my pockets with a store of banknotes, which represented a good deal of my immediate worldly wealth.
    • 1955, Mildred Clingerman, The Last Prophet:
      He had forgotten that a prophet is without honor under his own rooftree.
    • The correct costume had to be hand-made by each individual or 'rooftree' (family group) ... — The Kindred of the Kibbo Kift