bezant

bezant

[bez-uhnt, bih-zant]
noun
1.
Also, bezzant. the gold solidus of the Byzantine Empire, widely circulated in the Middle Ages.
2.
Also, byzant. (in Romanesque architecture) any of a number of disklike ornaments, similar in form to the classical patera, used especially on the faces of archivolts.
Also, besant.


Origin:
1150–1200; Middle English besant < Old French < Latin byzantius (nummus) Byzantine (coin)

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World English Dictionary
bezant, bezzant or byzant (ˈbɛzənt, bɪˈzænt, ˈbɛzənt, bɪˈzænt)
 
n
1.  a medieval Byzantine gold coin
2.  architect an ornament in the form of a flat disc
3.  heraldry a small gold circle
 
[C13: from Old French besant, from Medieval Latin Bӯzantius Byzantine (coin)]
 
bezzant, bezzant or byzant
 
n
 
[C13: from Old French besant, from Medieval Latin Bӯzantius Byzantine (coin)]
 
byzant, bezzant or byzant
 
n
 
[C13: from Old French besant, from Medieval Latin Bӯzantius Byzantine (coin)]

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
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Etymonline
Word Origin & History

bezant
"gold coin," c.1200, from O.Fr. besant, from L. byzantius, short for Byzantius nummus "coin of Byzantium."
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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