Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. A woman's belt or girdle, especially as worn in ancient Greece.
  • n. A covering for the hand made of leather straps weighted with iron or lead and worn by boxers in ancient Rome.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. A leather fighting glove, frequently weighed with metal.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. A girdle; particularly that of Aphrodite (or Venus) which gave the wearer the power of exciting love.
  • n. A genus of Ctenophora. The typical species (Cestus Veneris) is remarkable for its brilliant iridescent colors, and its long, girdlelike form.
  • n. A covering for the hands of boxers, made of leather bands, and often loaded with lead or iron.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. In Gr. and Rom. antiq., a girdle of any kind, whether worn by men or by women; particularly, the Greek girdle for confining the tunic, and specifically the girdle or zone of Venus, which was said to be decorated with everything that could awaken love.
  • n. In zoology: A ctenophoran; one of the Cestidæ. Same as Cestum.
  • n. Among the Greeks and Romans, a kind of boxing-glove or gauntlet, consisting of stout leather thongs or straps, often loaded with lead or iron, fastened on the hands and arms of boxers (called cestuarii) to render their blows more effective.

Etymologies

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

Latin, belt, from Greek kestos; see kent- in Indo-European roots.
Latin caestus, from caedere, to strike; see kaə-id- in Indo-European roots.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

From Latin cestus.

Examples

  • After a little research, he found this weapon called a cestus, and then gave it a Nemean lion design, and he believes that look influenced a lot of the grabbing gameplay now found in the finished game.

    Joystiq

  • [Footnote 468: I have avoided translating "cestus," as it is very doubtful what is meant by it.

    The Iliad of Homer (1873)

  • Instantly, Miss Skiffins stopped it with the neatness of a placid boxer, took off that girdle or cestus as before, and laid it on the table.

    Great Expectations

  • His waist expanded, or was no longer confined by the cestus which had given it a shape.

    The Newcomes

  • He flung aside the dagger-wielder with his left arm, and smashed his broken hilt like a cestus into the swordsman's temple.

    Wings in the Night

  • One of the family, developing along different lines, is even better of its hands; remarkable to tell, it carries a cestus of hardened shell as a means of protection and enforcing its rights.

    Last Leaves from Dunk Island

  • Through the cestus, the song of the two blades danced across Laronnar's skin, skittered along his bones.

    The Dragons at War

  • Keeping his gaze warily on his commander, Laronnar pulled out the cestus that he wore looped over his weapons belt and worked it onto his hand.

    The Dragons at War

  • He reached under his belt and pulled out his cestus, slipping it over his fingers, driving the metal into his flesh to help retain his failing consciousness.

    Brothers Majere

  • Other weapons included a brass cestus, punch-daggers, ring blades.

    Brothers Majere

Comments

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  • kind of belt worn by women of ancient greece

    September 17, 2008

  • plural is cestus too

    August 17, 2008