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flèche

[fleysh; French flesh] /fleɪʃ; French flɛʃ/
noun, plural flèches
[fley-shiz; French flesh] /ˈfleɪ ʃɪz; French flɛʃ/ (Show IPA)
1.
Architecture. a steeple or spire, especially one in the Gothic style, emerging from the ridge of a roof.
2.
Fortification. a fieldwork consisting of two faces forming a salient angle with an open gorge.
3.
Fencing. a method of attack with saber or épée in which the attacker leaves from the rear foot and advances rapidly toward the opponent.
Origin
1700-1710
1700-10; < French: literally, arrow, probably < Germanic. Cf. fly1
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Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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British Dictionary definitions for fleches

flèche

/fleɪʃ; flɛʃ/
noun
1.
Also called spirelet. a slender spire, esp over the intersection of the nave and transept ridges of a church roof
2.
a pointed part of a fortification directed towards the attackers
3.
(fencing) a short running attack
Word Origin
C18: from French: spire (literally: arrow), probably of Germanic origin; related to Middle Low German flieke long arrow
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
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Encyclopedia Article for fleches

fleche

in French architecture, any spire; in English it is an architectural term for a small slender spire placed on the ridge of a church roof. The fleche is usually built of a wood framework covered with lead or occasionally copper and is generally of rich, light, delicate design, in which tracery, miniature buttresses, and crockets have important parts

Learn more about fleche with a free trial on Britannica.com
Encyclopedia Britannica, 2008. Encyclopedia Britannica Online.
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