What does the word cistern mean?

Usage examples for cistern

  1. Self- reliance and self- denial will teach a man to drink out of his own cistern, and eat his own sweet bread, and to learn and labour truly to get his living, and carefully to expend the good things committed to his trust. – Self Help by Samuel Smiles
  2. He might very well have been taking his life in his hands, for he could have no idea whether the aperture led to the imperial dungeons or to the imperial rain- water cistern; but St. George instantly bent and slipped down into that darkness, thick with the dust of the flight of the old man. – Romance Island by Zona Gale