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misericord

misericord a ledge projecting from the underside of a hinged seat in a choir stall which, when the seat is turned up, gives support to someone standing. Medieval misericords were often decorated with elaborate and sometimes bawdy scenes from secular or religious life, visible when the seat was raised.

Dating in this sense from the early 16th century, misericord (denoting pity) is recorded from Middle English, and comes ultimately from Latin misericordia, from misericors ‘compassionate’, from the stem of misereri ‘to pity’ + cor, cord- ‘heart’. Other early uses in English include an apartment in a monastery in which some relaxations of the monastic rule were permitted, and a small dagger used to deliver a death stroke to a wounded enemy.

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misericords

misericords (mĬz´ərəkôrdz´), carvings in Gothic churches that adorn choir stalls provided for the use of the clergy during services. The stalls were carved with biblical scenes that demonstrated the artist's skill and wit. Superb examples of misericords are at Ely, Wells, and Lincoln cathedrals in England.

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misericord

misericord •record • telerecord • needlecord •ripcord, whipcord •discord • tape-record • misericord •harpsichord • clavichord •concord, Concorde •drawcord • monochord • pentachord •landlord • warlord • slumlord •overlord • broadsword • greensward

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