One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
A crown or garland given, originally by the Romans, to a person who achieved victory or distinction in a sea battle. Also: a depiction of such a crown, especially as a crest or charge in heraldry.
Late Middle English; earliest use found in John Lydgate (c1370–c1449), poet and prior of Hatfield Regis. From naval + crown, after classical Latin nāvālis corōna.
naval crown/ˌneɪvl ˈkraʊn/
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