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[lan-yerd] /ˈlæn yərd/
Nautical. a short rope or wire rove through deadeyes to hold and tauten standing rigging.
any of various small cords or ropes for securing or suspending something, as a whistle about the neck or a knife from one's belt.
a cord with a small hook at one end, used in firing certain kinds of cannon.
a colored, single-strand cord worn around the left shoulder by a member of a military unit awarded a foreign decoration.
a white cord worn around the right shoulder, as by a military police officer, and secured to the butt of a pistol.
Origin of lanyard
late Middle English
1475-85; blend of late Middle English lanyer (< Middle French laniere, Old French lasniere thong, equivalent to lasne noose + -iere, feminine of -ier -ier2) and yard1 Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for lanyard
  • While rotating the steel lanyard watch for cuts, frayed areas, or unusual wearing patterns on the wire.
  • In this instance, a safety belt and lanyard were provided, and required when work was performed above ground.
  • Body belt means a strap that can be secured around the waist or body and attached to a lanyard, lifeline, or deceleration device.
  • The painter was wearing a safety belt and lanyard secured to a lifeline.
  • Frederick's lanyard was not secured at the time of the accident.
  • Neither painter was wearing an approved safety belt and lanyard attached to an independent lifeline.
  • The forklift operator attached the lanyard to a safety belt, providing fall protection.
  • In use, the wire was hooked to the lanyard and the long tube inserted into the vent.
British Dictionary definitions for lanyard


a cord worn around the neck, shoulder, etc, to hold something such as a whistle or knife
a similar but merely decorative cord worn as part of a military uniform
a cord with an attached hook used in firing certain types of cannon
(nautical) a line rove through deadeyes for extending or tightening standing rigging
Word Origin
C15 lanyer, from French lanière, from lasne strap, probably of Germanic origin
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 lanyard

also laniard, alternative spelling (influenced by nautical yard (2) "long beam used to support a sail") of Middle English lainer, "thong for fastening parts of armor or clothing" (late 14c.), from Old French laniere "thong, lash," from lasniere, from lasne "strap, thong," apparently altered (by metathesis and influence of Old French las "lace") from nasliere, from Frankish *nastila or some other Germanic source, from Proto-Germanic *nastila- (cf. Old High German, Old Saxon nestila "lace, strap, band," German nestel "string, lace, strap"), from PIE root *ned- "to knot."

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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