Definition of ostler in English:


(also hostler)


  • A man employed to look after the horses of people staying at an inn.

    • ‘Baning was employed there as an hostler, and to that extent he was entirely within his rights.’
    • ‘He partook of a leisurely breakfast, paid his reckoning, had the ostler bring his horse, and set off to the sound of church bells in the clear air.’
    • ‘Candle makers, after all, cannot be expected to hail the invention of the electric light bulb, nor hostlers the advent of automobiles, nor canal-boat owners the building of railways, nor TV broadcasters the laying down of cable systems.’
    • ‘It didn't take long to pack things up with nine thousand men - not counting the servants, cooks, healers, horse hostlers, officers, and other assorted peoples - to do the work.’
    • ‘When the two of them reached the entrance to the stables, a hostler came walking up.’
    • ‘Erial smiled gratefully as the hostler brought up three horses.’
    • ‘After searching the entire castle, I eventually found them in the stables handing their horses over to the hostlers after a ride.’
    • ‘No one would have mistaken him for anything other than a stable-boy or hostler, and these aristocratic brats always made it a point never to look twice at a servant.’
    • ‘So the hostler cracked his whip, spurred on the lead horse on which he was seated, and the carriage splashed into the estuary.’


Late Middle English: from Old French hostelier ‘innkeeper’, from hostel (see hostel).