cope1 / kōp/ • v. [intr.] (of a person) deal effectively with something difficult: his ability to cope with stress. ∎ (of a machine or system) have the capacity to deal successfully with: the roads are barely adequate to cope with the present traffic.DERIVATIVES: cop·er n.cope2 • n. a long, loose cloak worn by a priest or bishop on ceremonial occasions. ∎ technical or poetic/lit. a thing resembling or likened to a cloak: the bay and the square were a seamless cope.• v. [tr.] [usu. as adj.] (coped) (in building) cover (a joint or structure) with a coping.
Hence cope-stone top stone of a building XVI; whence prob. cope vb. cover (a wall) with a head stone XVII; coping uppermost course of masonry or brickwork XVII; see -ING 1.