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tiffany

[tif-uh-nee] /ˈtɪf ə ni/
noun, plural tiffanies.
1.
a sheer, mesh fabric constructed in plain weave, originally made of silk but now often made of cotton or synthetic fibers.
Origin
1250-1300
1250-1300; 1595-1605 for current sense; perhaps punning use of the earlier word, Middle English: feast of the Epiphany < Old French tiphanie Epiphany < Late Latin theophania. See theophany

Tiffany

[tif-uh-nee] /ˈtɪf ə ni/
noun
1.
Charles Lewis, 1812–1902, U.S. jeweler.
2.
his son, Louis Comfort
[kuhm-fert] /ˈkʌm fərt/ (Show IPA),
1848–1933, U.S. painter and decorator, especially of glass.
3.
a female given name.
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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British Dictionary definitions for tiffany

tiffany

/ˈtɪfənɪ/
noun (pl) -nies
1.
a sheer fine gauzy fabric
Word Origin
C17: (in the sense: a fine dress worn on Twelfth Night): from Old French tifanie, from ecclesiastical Latin theophania Epiphany; see theophany

Tiffany1

/ˈtifənɪ/
noun
1.
Louis Comfort. 1848–1933, US glass-maker and Art-Nouveau craftsman, best known for creating the Favrile style of stained glass

Tiffany2

noun (pl) -nies
1.
another name for Chantilly (sense 2)
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 tiffany
n.

"type of thin, transparent fabric," c.1600; earlier a common name for the festival of the Epiphany (early 14c.; in Anglo-French from late 13c.), from Old French Tifinie, Tiphanie (c.1200), from Late Latin Theophania "Theophany," another name for the Epiphany, from Greek theophania "the manifestation of a god."

Also popular in Old French and Middle English as a name given to girls born on Epiphany Day. The fabric sense is found only in English and is of obscure origin and uncertain relation to the other meanings, unless as a fanciful allusion to "manifestation:"

The invention of that fine silke, Tiffanie, Sarcenet, and Cypres, which instead of apparell to cover and hide, shew women naked through them. [Holland's "Pliny," 1601]
The fashionable N.Y. jewelry firm Tiffany & Co. (1895) is named for its founder, goldsmith Charles L. Tiffany (1812-1902) and his son, Louis C. Tiffany (1848-1933), who was the Art Nouveau decorator noted for his glassware. The surname is attested in English from 1206.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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16
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