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[kaw-fin, kof-in] /ˈkɔ fɪn, ˈkɒf ɪn/
Levi, 1798–1877, U.S. abolitionist leader.
Robert P(eter) Tristram, 1892–1955, U.S. poet, essayist, and biographer. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for levi coffin
Historical Examples
  • Sam was perfectly safe so long as levi coffin was guide for the hunting-party, but matters were becoming desperate.

British Dictionary definitions for levi coffin


a box in which a corpse is buried or cremated
the part of a horse's foot that contains the coffin bone
(transitive) to place in or as in a coffin
(engineering) another name for flask (sense 6)
Word Origin
C14: from Old French cofin, from Latin cophinus basket; see coffer
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 levi coffin



early 14c., "chest or box for valuables," from Old French cofin "sarcophagus," earlier "basket, coffer" (12c., Modern French coffin), from Latin cophinus "basket, hamper" (source of Italian cafano, Spanish cuebano "basket"), from Greek kophinos "a basket," of uncertain origin.

Funeral sense in English is 1520s; before that it was the literal Latin one and had also a meaning of "pie crust" (late 14c.). Meaning "vehicle regarded as unsafe" is from 1830s. Coffin nail "cigarette" is slang from 1880; nail in (one's) coffin "thing that contributes to one's death" is from 1792.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Slang definitions & phrases for levi coffin



  1. A ship regarded as unsafe; later, any unsafe vehicle (1830s+)
  2. A tank or armored car (WWII Army)
The Dictionary of American Slang, Fourth Edition by Barbara Ann Kipfer, PhD. and Robert L. Chapman, Ph.D.
Copyright (C) 2007 by HarperCollins Publishers.
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levi coffin in the Bible

used in Gen. 50:26 with reference to the burial of Joseph. Here, it means a mummy-chest. The same Hebrew word is rendered "chest" in 2 Kings 12:9, 10.

Easton's 1897 Bible Dictionary
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