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noun Scot. and North England.
  1. a coffer; a money chest.
  2. any chestlike container; a box, trunk, or basket.
  3. a coffin, especially a stone one; a sarcophagus.

Origin of kist1

1300–50; Middle English kiste < Old Norse kista chest


  1. cist2.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for kist

Historical Examples

  • A' that ye'll tak wi' ye will be but a kist and a sheet, after a'.

    The Proverbs of Scotland

    Alexander Hislop

  • The kist and its contents will be sold for a guinea and not a bawbee less.

  • She lift up his bloudy hed, And kist his wounds that were so red.

  • Some ran to coffer, and some to kist, But nought was stown that could be mist.

  • “Ay, but the kist in the garret isna locked,” Nanny answered.

British Dictionary definitions for kist


noun Scot and Northern English dialect
  1. a large chest or coffer

Word Origin

C14: from Old Norse kista; see chest


  1. archaeol a variant spelling of cist 2


  1. Southern African a large wooden chest in which linen is stored, esp one used to store a bride's trousseau

Word Origin

from Afrikaans, from Dutch: chest
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Word Origin and History for kist


"chest," c.1300, from Old Norse kista "chest," from Latin cista (see chest).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper