Find the word definition

Crossword clues for ascender


n. 1 (context typography English) The portion of a lowercase letter that extends above the midline of a typeface. 2 (context climbing English) a mechanical device used for ascending on a rope

  1. n. someone who ascends

  2. a lowercase letter that has a part extending above other lowercase letters

  3. (printing) the part of tall lowercase letters that extends above the other lowercase letters

Ascender (typography)

In typography, an ascender is the portion of a minuscule letter in a Latin-derived alphabet that extends above the mean line of a font. That is, the part of a lower-case letter that is taller than the font's x-height.

Ascenders, together with descenders, increase the recognizability of words. For this reason, many situations that require high legibility such as road signs avoid using solely capital letters, the all caps style.

Studies made at the start of the construction of the British motorway network concluded that words with mixed-case letters were much easier to read than "all-caps" and a special font was designed for motorway signs. These then became universal across the UK. See Road signs in the United Kingdom.

In many fonts intended for body text, such as Bembo and Garamond, ascenders rise above the cap height of the capital letters.

Ascender (climbing)

An ascender is a mechanical device used for ascending on a rope. One such device is a Jumar, named after the two inventors, Jurgen (Ju) and Walter Marti (mar) and their Swiss factory which developed the first tool for sale in 1958. The device's name also leads to the term Jumaring for the process of using such a device. Other terms for this process include ascending, prusiking and jugging.

Ascenders offer similar functionality to friction knots, but are faster and easier to use, albeit with consequences in security (as ascenders can, even with a locking carabiner, come off the rope, and fail by shredding the rope at high loads, rather than slipping and fusing as with friction knots). An ascender employs a cam which allows the device to slide freely in one direction (usually the intended direction of movement), and provide a firm grip on the rope when pulled on in the opposite direction. To prevent an ascender from accidentally coming off the rope, a locking mechanism or trigger is deployed. The ascender is first attached to the climber's harness by a piece of webbing or sling, and then is clipped onto the rope and locked. For climbing on a fixed rope attached, for example, to snow anchors on a steep slope, only one ascender is used, keeping the other hand free for holding an ice axe.

Jumaring, also referred to as jugging, is where the second climber (the one who belays the lead climber on the route) uses ascenders to climb the rope instead of climbing directly on the rock. Along with the ascenders, one or more webbing "ladders" called étriers (or aiders) are typically used to allow climbers to use their feet to step up and pull themselves up the rope.

Ascending is not typically performed on free climbing routes where a climber uses his or her hands and feet on the rock, climbing the features, edges, cracks, and pockets that the route provides without artificial aids. Typically, ascending is reserved for aid climbing where the climbers are climbing near-featureless faces of rock, usually with very thin cracks that climbers probably could not get their fingers into to make the holds useful. In aid climbing, climbers are very dependent on gear placements to ascend the route, using the étrier to step as high as possible on a piece of gear to place another piece of gear. Since some pieces are only intended for placement for movement and not protection, the leader does not leave every piece of gear he places to climb the route. The leader can climb with a lighter rack if he or she places gear necessary to advance on the route, then removes gear regularly as he steps into the next higher étrier, yet leaving enough safely placed gear to protect against a fall. Once the leader has set up the belay, the former belayer begins climbing the rope. Since the leader has more than likely removed a great deal of gear as he or she climbed the route, and the rock being relatively featureless, it makes ascending necessary to ascend the route.

In caving, ascending a rope by means of mechanical devices is often necessary and is the main alternative to ladder use. The rock which forms the cave is often wet, slippery, relatively featureless and often unreachable from the necessary rope locations. So climbing the rope may well be preferable to climbing the rock or a ladder, provided that a belay location that provides a dry ascent has already been found.

Ascenders can also be used as a braking component within a rope hauling system, often used in rescue situations.


Ascender may refer to:

  • Ascender (climbing) - the rope-climbing device
  • Ascender Corporation - the font company
  • Ascender (typography) - ascenders in typography
  • Curtiss-Wright XP-55 Ascender - prototype aircraft
  • Floating cam ascender - self-locking device for climbers
  • Isuzu Ascender - the sports utility vehicle
  • JP Aerospace Ascender - spaceship launch airship
  • JP Aerospace Orbital Ascender - orbital airship design
  • Pterodactyl Ascender - ultralight aircraft

Usage examples of "ascender".

Descenders and the Ascenders, and, most lamentably, passes over those systemssuch as that of Plotinusthat perfectly integrate the two.

The Ascenders are destroying this world, because it is the one world they are all certain that they thoroughly despise.

Descenders accuse the Ascenders of being repressive, puritanical, life-denying, sex-denying, earth-destroying, and body-ignoring.

The two could no longer be united, and historically the Ascenders and the Descenders went virtually their separate ways.

The pessimistic Ascenders dourly pursued an otherworldly Goal they were assured of never reaching, and the optimistic Descenders giddily embraced a this-worldly creation whose Source they celebrated but never experienced.

Suddenly, very suddenly, the Ascenders were out, the Descenders were inand the transition was bloody, arguably the bloodiest cognitive transformation in European history.

Descenders accuse the Ascenders of being repressive, puritanical, life-denying, sex-denying, earth-destroying, and body-ignoring.

The two could no longer be united, and historically the Ascenders and the Descenders went virtually their separate ways.

I loved the litany of the tools we were using: deadmen, pitons, pickets, ice screws, carabiners, jumar ascenders.

We will return to this history in a moment, but such have been the Ascenders, in just a few of their many guises.

With tears streaming down the face and upward-turned eyes, these Ascenders are ready to destroy this worldor at the very least, neglect it to deathin order to get to the Promised Land, a land that, however vaguely it might actually be conceived, is clearly enough understood to be anything but this land, definitely not this world, which is shadows to the core, deceptions in depth, illusions at best, demonic at worse.

Gnostics, who were archetypal Ascenders, viewing all of manifestation as nothing but shadows, and evil shadows at that.

The Descenders accuse the Ascenders of being repressive, puritanical, life-denying, sex-denying, earth-destroying, and body-ignoring.

Descenders, that spews evil into this world, and the Ascenders are the primary representatives of that evil.

And whereas the Ascenders had dominated the scene up to the Renaissance, all it took was a decisive shift in consciousness to unleash the Descending Path, a path which, bursting forth from its thousand-year confinement, exploded on the scene with a creative fury that would, in the span of a mere few centuries, remake the entire Western worldand in the process substitute, more or less permanently, one broken God for the other.