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From The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.48:
Girder \Gird"er\, n. [From Gird to encircle.] [1913 Webster] 1. One who, or that which, girds. [1913 Webster] 2. (Arch. & Engin.) A main beam; a stright, horizontal beam to span an opening or carry weight, such as ends of floor beams, etc.; hence, a framed or built-up member discharging the same office, technically called a compound girder. See Illusts. of Frame, and Doubleframed floor, under Double. [1913 Webster] Bowstring girder, Box girder, etc. See under Bowstring, Box, etc. Girder bridge. See under Bridge. Lattice girder, a girder consisting of longitudinal bars united by diagonal crossing bars. Half-lattice girder, a girder consisting of horizontal upper and lower bars connected by a series of diagonal bars sloping alternately in opposite directions so as to divide the space between the bars into a series of triangles. --Knight. Sandwich girder, a girder consisting of two parallel wooden beams, between which is an iron plate, the whole clamped together by iron bolts. [1913 Webster]