- the shield carried by a mounted man-at-arms in the Middle Ages.
- any of various gold and silver coins of France, issued from the 13th through the 18th centuries, bearing the figure of a shield.
Origin of écu
- a former money of account of the European Common Market that was used in international finance until the euro was adopted and was based on the combined prorated values of the currencies of member nations.
Origin of ECU
- English Church Union.
Examples from the Web for ecu
They drank their coffees, gave an ecu to the proprietor, and went out.Moorish Literature
In which sport she was so taken up with her hands, that she forgot to cheat, and Denys won an "ecu au soleil" of her.The Cloister and the Hearth
From ecu you have ecuyer;—from scutum scutiger, both passing into our English squire.The Eagle's Nest
- European Currency Unit: a former unit of currency based on the composite value of several different currencies in the European Union and functioning as both the reserve asset and the accounting unit of the European Monetary System; replaced by the euro in 1999
- any of various former French gold or silver coins
- a small shield
Word Origin and History for ecu
old French silver coin, 1704, from French écu, from Old French escu (12c.) "shield, coat of arms," also the name of a coin, from Latin scutum "shield" (see hide (n.1)). First issued by Louis IX (1226-1270); so called because the shield of France was imprinted on them.