One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
A mounted courier.‘an estafette was forwarded to the Lord Lieutenant, to inform him of the news’
messenger, special messenger, dispatch rider, letter carrier, mail carrier, runner, bearer, message bearer, message carrier, delivery man, delivery woman, conveyor, envoy, emissary, harbinger, heraldView synonyms
- ‘Even the estafettes who rushed Imperial correspondence from the seat of war back to Paris were given orders as to what they might and might not report along the way.’
- ‘While en route, Charles Todd commissioned him to act as estafette between the construction parties of the Overland Telegraph Line.’
- ‘What, rob an estafette! I never heard of such folly.’
- ‘The estafettes which ran between Naples and Marseilles during the reign of Joachim Murat performed the distance in five days.’
- ‘A mounted estafette stopped them on the railway line, telling them to return to Puits-Perdu.’
Early 17th century: French, from Italian staffetta, diminutive of staffa ‘stirrup’.
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