First attested in the 1660s, probably from cant (“slope”) + lever, but the earliest form (c. 1610) was cantlapper. First element may also be Spanish can (“dog”), an architect's term for an end of timber jutting out of a wall, on which beams rested.
cantilever (plural cantilevers)
- (architecture) A beam anchored at one end and projecting into space, such as a long bracket projecting from a wall to support a balcony.
cantilever (third-person singular simple present cantilevers, present participle cantilevering, simple past and past participle cantilevered)
- To project (something) in the manner of or by means of a cantilever.