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See also: Crest and CREST


A bird's crest (sense 2).
A helmet with a crest (sense 3).
The coat of arms of Kensington and Chelsea with a broom bush as crest (sense 4, a reference to Brompton)
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From Middle English creste, from Old French creste (modern French crête) and perhaps continuing Old English cræsta (crest, tuft, plume); both ultimately from Vulgar Latin *cresta, from Latin crista. Doublet of crista.

The informal meaning “design, logo” (sense 11) stems from a misinterpretation of the heraldic sense 4, which specifically refers to the object placed on top of the helm.


  • IPA(key): /kɹɛst/
  • Rhymes: -ɛst
  • (file)


crest (plural crests)

  1. The summit of a hill or mountain ridge.
  2. A tuft, or other natural ornament, growing on an animal's head, for example the comb of a cockerel, the swelling on the head of a snake, the lengthened feathers of the crown or nape of bird, etc.
  3. The plume of feathers, or other decoration, worn on or displayed on a helmet; the distinctive ornament of a helmet.
  4. (heraldry) A bearing worn, not upon the shield, but usually on a helmet above it, sometimes (as for clerics) separately above the shield or separately as a mark for plate, in letterheads, and the like.
  5. The upper curve of a horse's neck.
  6. The ridge or top of a wave.
  7. The helm or head, as typical of a high spirit; pride; courage.
  8. The ornamental finishing which surmounts the ridge of a roof, canopy, etc.
  9. The top line of a slope or embankment.
  10. (anatomy) A ridge along the surface of a bone.
  11. Any of several birds in the family Regulidae, including the goldcrests and firecrests.


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crest (third-person singular simple present crests, present participle cresting, simple past and past participle crested)

  1. (intransitive) Particularly with reference to waves, to reach a peak.
  2. (transitive) To reach the crest of (a hill or mountain)
    • 2019 November 21, Samanth Subramanian, “How our home delivery habit reshaped the world”, in The Guardian[2]:
      the land rolls gently, so that, upon cresting a low rise or passing a copse of wind turbines, you suddenly spot a lot full of lorries or a complex of gigantic sheds.
  3. To furnish with, or surmount as, a crest; to serve as a crest for.
  4. To mark with lines or streaks like waving plumes.




Alternative forms[edit]


From Latin crēscō. Compare Romanian crește, cresc.



crest (past participle crãscute)

  1. I grow.

Related terms[edit]