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quinquereme an ancient Roman or Greek galley of a kind believed to have had three banks of oars, the oars in the top two banks being rowed by pairs of oarsmen and the oars in the bottom bank being rowed by single oarsmen.

The word comes from Latin, from quinque ‘five’ + remus ‘oar’; the significance of the number five continues to be debated. In current usage, quinquereme may be employed to evoke a romantic vision of the ancient world.

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