One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
An ornamental shoulder piece on an item of clothing, especially on the coat or jacket of a military uniform.
- ‘I just wish the pilot wasn't wearing shiny black shoes, pressed black trousers, and a white, starched shirt with epaulettes that vaguely suggest a naval uniform.’
- ‘She straightened one of the epaulettes on his shoulders that bore the four gold stripes of his rank.’
- ‘Military officials, meanwhile, looked as if they were heading for a parade, strutting around in uniform with gold epaulettes and medals on display.’
- ‘He wore the ceremonial lavender Administrator robe with a gold collar and epaulets.’
- ‘I purchased a navy surplus coat, and it came with epaulets.’
- ‘The epaulettes on the choker tunic of his black naval uniform bore the four stripes of his rank.’
- ‘Just over a year ago, a new uniform was adopted, replacing the former uniform with its epaulette and caps, which reflected the military origins of most of the judiciary.’
- ‘After rising through the flying ranks to captain, he switched his epaulettes for a business suit to move into a corporate job with the airline.’
- ‘However there were no epaulettes, and no uniform trousers.’
- ‘Coats, jackets, and other garments became increasingly embellished during the 18th century as epaulettes, loops, lace, and aiguillettes all appeared.’
- ‘The cuffs were also of the same nature, as were the epaulettes on the shoulders of his military tunic.’
- ‘Wearing his military uniform, decorated with medals and gold epaulets, he looked fit, impressive, and self-assured.’
- ‘He was rushed to hospital where doctors found that the epaulette on his shirt had saved him from the worst of the wound.’
- ‘She wears a jacket with epaulettes and metal buttons.’
- ‘Or he would take apart a necklace and use it as an epaulet on the shoulder of a jacket so that the coat would be ‘covered with trinkets and madness.’’
- ‘Look out for shirts with pockets, epaulettes - and especially shirt dresses, which will be making a strong statement this spring.’
- ‘Their formidable presence, clad in gray uniforms with epaulettes and badges, and the silence pervading their stares, shattered a comfort barrier that held my mind in check and kept others from noticing a sign of personal distress.’
- ‘Have you considered shoulder pads and epaulettes?’
- ‘The traditional blue trousers with blue or white shirts with epaulettes and ties made paramedics look more like police and were becoming impractical.’
- ‘The two dwarves were dressed in plain brown shirts and trousers of the same design, and they had gold epaulettes on their shoulders.’
Late 18th century: from French épaulette, diminutive of épaule ‘shoulder’, from Latin spatula in the late Latin sense ‘shoulder blade’.
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