1. A cone-shaped sleeve used for holding circular or rodlike pieces in a lathe or other machine.
2. A metal collar used in watchmaking to join one end of a balance spring to the balance staff.
3. A circular flange or rim, as in a ring, into which a gem is set.
[French, diminutive of col, collar, from Latin collum, neck; see kwel-1 in the Appendix of Indo-European roots.]
The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition copyright ©2018 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
The American Heritage Dictionary Blog
Check out our blog, updated regularly, for new words and revised definitions, interesting images from the 5th edition, discussions of usage, and more.