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noun Chiefly British.
  1. the letter Z or z.
  2. a Z-bar.

Origin of zed

1400–50; late Middle English < Middle French zede < Latin zēta < Greek zêta zeta


  1. a male given name, form of Zedekiah.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for zed

Historical Examples

  • I called it "zed," but the editor said it was "zee," and I did not argue the point.

    The Book of the Bush

    George Dunderdale

  • It seemed to meak me veel merryish, an' I zed, "What's to pay, young 'ooman?"

    A Cotswold Village

    J. Arthur Gibbs

  • An' zo a zed a 'oodden bide yer no longer, fur ef a did her'd never let un gwo.

  • Zed, zed, n. the letter Z, also called zee and izzard: a bar of metal of form similar to the letter Z.

  • Fifty years later, I was dating Lil, another redhead, but Zed was my first.

British Dictionary definitions for zed


  1. the British spoken form of the letter zUS word: zee

Word Origin

C15: from Old French zede, via Late Latin from Greek zēta
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 zed


c.1400, from Middle French zede, from Late Latin zeta, from Greek zeta, from Hebrew zayin, letter name, literally "weapon;" so called in reference to the shape of this letter in ancient Hebrew. U.S. pronunciation zee is first attested 1670s. Other dialectal names for the letter are izzard, ezod, uzzard, and zod.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper