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"sculptured horizontal band in architecture," 1560s, from Middle French frise, originally "a ruff," from Medieval Latin frisium "embroidered border," variant of frigium, probably from Latin Phrygium "Phrygian, Phrygian work," from Phrygia, the ancient country in Asia Minor known for its embroidery (cf. Phrygiae vestes "ornate garments"). Meaning "decorative band along the top of a wall" was in Old French.
An ornamental band that runs around a building. Friezes are usually on the exterior of a building and are often sculpted in bas-relief.