noun, plural palfreys.
a riding horse, as distinguished from a war horse.
a saddle horse particularly suitable for a woman.

1200–50; Middle English palefrei < Old French < Late Latin paraverēdus post horse for byways, probably literally, spare horse, equivalent to Greek para- para-1 + Latin verēdus fast breed of horse < Gaulish < Celtic *woreidos (> Welsh gorwydd horse, charger), equivalent to *wo- under (< *upo-; cf. hypo-) + *reid-, base of Old Irish réidid (he) rides, réid level, smooth, easy, Welsh rhwydd easy; see ride

palfreyed, adjective Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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World English Dictionary
palfrey (ˈpɔːlfrɪ)
archaic a light saddle horse, esp ridden by women
[C12: from Old French palefrei, from Medieval Latin palafredus, from Late Latin paraverēdus, from Greek para beside + Latin verēdus light fleet horse, of Celtic origin]

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

1148, "saddle horse for ordinary riding (opposed to a war horse), small horse for ladies," from O.Fr. palefrei (11c.), from M.L. palafredus, alt. by dissimilation from L.L. paraveredus "post horse for outlying districts" (6c.), originally "extra horse," from Gk. para "beside, secondary" + L. veredus
"post horse; light, fast horse used by couriers," from Gaul. *voredos (cf. Welsh gorwydd "horse," O.Ir. riadaim "I ride"). The L. word passed to O.H.G. as pfarifrid, where in modern Ger. it has become the usual word for "horse" (pferd).
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Example sentences
Therewith the king and all espied where came riding down the river a lady on a white palfrey toward them.
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