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Type Surname
Usage English
Pronounced Pron. AL-ə-bas-tər  [key]
Other Forms FormsAlabastir, Arblaster, Armbruster

Meaning & History

From the name of a whitish kind of gypsum used for vases, ornaments and busts, ultimately deriving from Greek alabastros, itself perhaps from Egyptian 'a-labaste "vessel of the goddess Bast". The English word alabaster is used figuratively for whiteness and smoothness.
Meant "crossbowman" (from Anglo-Norman arblaster, from Old French arbalestre "crossbow").

Cf. Armbruster ("crossbowman" or "maker of crossbows", from a derivative of Middle High German armbrust "crossbow", from Old French arbalestre), Ballaster ("person who makes or is armed with a crossbow", from a derivative of Middle English baleste "crossbow", from Old French).
Added 1/4/2012 by Giacobbe.Serperior
Edited 12/23/2022 by Mike C, Sofia, Frollein Gladys and more