Help Wordnik hunt for a million missing words by backing our Kickstarter!


from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. A form of crest common in the middle ages at different periods, as in the reign of Richard I. of England, whose second great seal shows this crest, and again at the end of the thirteenth century, when it assumed the shape of a fan or screen with radiating ribs, attached to the helm at a single point.
  • n. In ornithology, a large longitudinal crest which opens and closes somewhat like a fan. The crests of the hoopoe and cockatoo are examples.


Sorry, no etymologies found.


  • One of the most beautiful things I ever came across, was, when about ten years old, I saw on a fence stake ahead of me a big bird that was red, white and blue, with a flaming yellow fan-crest.

    Woodland Tales


Log in or sign up to get involved in the conversation. It's quick and easy.