from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License
- n. A bordure which runs around the outline of a shield without touching the edge.
from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English
- n. A bearing, in the form of a fillet, round the shield, within, but at some distance from, the border.
- n. The wreath, or chaplet, surmounting or encircling the helmet of a knight and bearing the crest.
from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
- n. In heraldry: A bearing, usually considered as a subordinary, like a border but not reaching the edge of the escutcheon, so that the field is seen outside of it as well as within.
- n. A band of small objects taking the form of an orle: as, an orle of mullets. It is more commonly blazoned in orle (which see, below).
- n. A circlet set upon a helmet, which supports the crest and is often used in modern heraldry without the helmet, furnishing the only support or base for the crest.
- n. The rim of a shield; especially, the metal rim of a shield composed of wood, osier, or the like, and visible as a projecting rim on its face.
- n. In architecture, same as orlet.
From Old French (also modern) orle, from ourler ‘to hem’, or from *orula, a diminutive of Latin ora ‘edge’, probably from os, or- ‘mouth’. (Wiktionary)