One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
1A garland or circlet for a person's head.
festoon, lei, wreath, chain, loop, ring, circle, swathe, swagView synonyms
- ‘In the Middle Ages young women wore wreaths of gold and eventually gave way to chaplets.’
- ‘The Magician himself is a Druid-like wisdom figure, complete with beard, staff, long robe, and chaplet of oak leaves.’
- ‘Improvising hastily, the papal legate Guala is said to have crowned the new king with a chaplet of flowers.’
- ‘Cheered by dynastic thoughts, he forgets his disdain for the wedding-favour, a chaplet of carnations, he is obliged to wear.’
- ‘The women, their heads surmounted by broad, solid-brass chaplets and their breasts covered with heavy metal necklaces, carry sticks in their right hands like drum majorettes.’
2A string of 55 beads (one third of the rosary number) for counting prayers, or as a necklace.
strand, rope, necklace, rosaryView synonyms
- ‘Usually no special color is prescribed for the beads of the various chaplets.’
- ‘A special person or event in the Catholic tradition, or a beloved Catholic devotion inspires the choice of materials for each chaplet or set of rosary beads.’
3A metal support for the core of a hollow casting mould.
- ‘To this end numerous metal ‘core pins' or ‘chaplets ' are pushed through the wax shell to span the gap between the core and the outer mould.’
- ‘If the design is such that there is insufficient support to hold the core in position, then metal supports called chaplets are used.’
- ‘In addition, with the one-piece core, no chaplets are needed to support the core.’
Late Middle English: from Old French chapelet, diminutive of chapel ‘hat’, based on late Latin cappa ‘cap’.
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