[15] A cuirass ‘breastplate’ is literally, and was originally, a piece of body armour made of leather. The word comes, via French cuirasse, from Vulgar Latin *coriācia, a nominal use of the Latin adjective coriāceus ‘made of leather’. This was a derivative of corium ‘leather’, which came ultimately from the Indo-European base *ker- or *sker- ‘cut’ (source also of English shear), the underlying notion being of removing the animal’s hide with a knife. Other descendants of Latin corium include French cuir and Spanish cuero, both meaning ‘leather’. => CURTAIL, SHEAR, SHIRT, SHORT, SKIRT

The Hutchinson dictionary of word origins. 2013.

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  • Cuirass — Cui*rass (kw[ e]*r[.a]s , or kw[=e] r[a^]s; 277), n.; pl. {Cuirasses}( [e^]z). [F.cuirasse, orig., a breastplate of leather, for OF. cuir[ e]e, cuirie influenced by It. corazza, or Sp. coraza, fr. an assumed LL. coriacea, fr. L. coriaceus, adj.,… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • cuirass — [kwi ras′] n. [Fr cuirasse < It corazza < VL * coracea, for L ( vestis) coriacea, leather (clothing) < corium, leather, hide: see CORIUM] 1. a piece of closefitting armor for protecting the breast and back, orig. made of leather 2. the… …   English World dictionary

  • cuirass — index panoply Burton s Legal Thesaurus. William C. Burton. 2006 …   Law dictionary

  • cuirass — (n.) armor for the chest and back, mid 15c., from M.Fr. cuirasse (15c.), from L.L. coriacea vestis garment of leather, from L. corium leather, hide (see CORIUM (Cf. corium)). Cognate with It. corazza, Sp. coraza, Port. couraça …   Etymology dictionary

  • cuirass — ► NOUN historical ▪ a piece of armour consisting of breastplate and backplate fastened together. ORIGIN Old French, from Latin corium leather …   English terms dictionary

  • Cuirass — This article is about a type of armour. For details of cavalry wearing cuirasses, see cuirassier. For information about cuirass ventilation, see iron lung. An 1854 cuirass worn by the French Cuirassiers …   Wikipedia

  • cuirass — /kwi ras /, n. 1. Also called corselet. defensive armor for the torso comprising a breastplate and backplate, originally made of leather. 2. either of the plates forming such armor. 3. any similar covering, as the protective armor of a ship. 4.… …   Universalium

  • cuirass — cui•rass [[t]kwɪˈræs[/t]] n. 1) her plate armor covering the torso from neck to waist 2) her either of the two plates of a cuirass 3) any similar covering, as a ship s armor 4) zool. a hard shell or other covering on an animal forming a defensive …   From formal English to slang

  • cuirass — noun Etymology: Middle English curas, from Middle French cuirasse, probably from Old Occitan coirassa, from Late Latin coreacea, feminine of coreaceus leathern, from Latin corium skin, leather; akin to Old English heortha deerskin, Latin …   New Collegiate Dictionary

  • cuirass — noun a) A piece of defensive armor, covering the body from the neck to the girdle. The cuirass covered the body before and behind, it consisted of two parts, a breast and back piece of iron, fastened together by means of straps and buckles, or… …   Wiktionary

  • cuirass — The anterior surface of the thorax in relation to symptoms or disease changes. [Fr. cuirasse, a breastplate] analgesic c. SYN: tabetic c.. tabetic c. an analgesic or hypalgesic zone in the proximal …   Medical dictionary

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