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[fas-it] /ˈfæs ɪt/
one of the small, polished plane surfaces of a cut gem.
a similar surface cut on a fragment of rock by the action of water, windblown sand, etc.
aspect; phase:
They carefully examined every facet of the argument.
Architecture. any of the faces of a column cut in a polygonal form.
Zoology. one of the corneal lenses of a compound arthropod eye.
Anatomy. a small, smooth, flat area on a hard surface, especially on a bone.
Dentistry. a small, highly burnished area, usually on the enamel surface of a tooth, produced by abrasion between opposing teeth in chewing.
verb (used with object), faceted, faceting or (especially British) facetted, facetting.
to cut facets on.
Origin of facet
1615-25; < French facette little face. See face, -et
Related forms
unfaceted, adjective Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for facet
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • Every facet of the sprawling IC operation was being checked.

    Insidekick Jesse Franklin Bone
  • They were on a facet of the hill not quite so advantageous as others.

    The Long Roll Mary Johnston
  • It is a facet of what we called earlier the philosophical source of pollution.

    The Nation's River United States Department of the Interior
  • In the larger and older jewels every facet may stand for a bloody deed.

  • The facet cutting on the long "reflectors" is particularly fine and interesting.

    Old Irish Glass Graydon Stannus
British Dictionary definitions for facet


any of the surfaces of a cut gemstone
an aspect or phase, as of a subject or personality
(architect) the raised surface between the flutes of a column
any of the lenses that make up the compound eye of an insect or other arthropod
(anatomy) any small smooth area on a hard surface, as on a bone
verb -ets, -eting, -eted, -ets, -etting, -etted
(transitive) to cut facets in (a gemstone)
Word Origin
C17: from French facette a little face
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for facet

1620s, from French facette (12c., Old French facete), diminutive of face (see face (n.)). The diamond-cutting sense is the original one. Related: Faceted; facets.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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facet in Medicine

facet fac·et (fās'ĭt)

  1. A small smooth area on a bone or other firm structure.

  2. A worn spot on a tooth, produced by chewing or grinding.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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