cod·​piece | \ ˈkäd-ˌpēs How to pronounce codpiece (audio) \

Definition of codpiece

: a flap or bag concealing an opening in the front of men's breeches especially in the 15th and 16th centuries

Examples of codpiece in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web There are undeniably moments, many of them wordless: a floundering Ferrell in a snow-white onesie with a homemade codpiece; a hamster-wheel stage stunt gone horrendously wrong. Leah Greenblatt,, "Netflix's star-studded Eurovision movie is goofy to a fault: Review," 24 June 2020 Fashions change, and the current speed demons—cars such as the Pontiac SSEi—wear their prowess like a codpiece. Martin Padgett Jr., Car and Driver, "Tested: 1993 Volkswagen Passat GLX Pairs Stealth with Speed," 15 June 2020 In 1941, a conservator discovered that some details had been changed; most provocatively, some men’s genitals, which Bruegel portrayed in prominent pouches called codpieces, had been painted over. Judith H. Dobrzynski, WSJ, "‘Bruegel’s “The Wedding Dance” Revealed’ Review: Revelry Restored," 21 Jan. 2020 Long before there were jockstraps, codpieces scandalized the world in both art and life. Katherine J. Wu, Smithsonian, "Detroit Exhibit Celebrates Bruegel’s ‘The Wedding Dance’ and Its Controversial Codpieces," 13 Dec. 2019 At some point in the artwork’s past, a vandal scratched or scribbled lines on five of its most prominent codpieces. Katherine J. Wu, Smithsonian, "Detroit Exhibit Celebrates Bruegel’s ‘The Wedding Dance’ and Its Controversial Codpieces," 13 Dec. 2019 The 9th annual San Jose fair drew more than 3,000 fans of corsets and codpieces over the weekend. Karen D'souza, The Mercury News, "San Jose Renaissance and Fantasy Faire holds court downtown," 4 Aug. 2019 Who can forget Edmund's brief stint as a corrupt Archbishop of Canterbury and that infamous Black Russian codpiece? Jennifer Ouellette, Ars Technica, "Rumor has it there’s a cunning plan to bring back Blackadder for fifth season," 1 July 2019 Deacon’s mishmash of bloomers, codpieces, and 16th-century ruffs made of false hair was equal parts Fred Flintstone and Tim Burton. Lilah Ramzi, Vogue, "The New York City Ballet Hosts a Fall Gala to Remember With Costumes by Gareth Pugh, Alberta Ferretti, and Giles Deacon," 28 Sep. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'codpiece.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of codpiece

15th century, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for codpiece

Middle English codpese, from cod "bag, scrotum" (going back to Old English codd, akin to Middle Dutch codde "cylindrical piece of wood," Old Frisian kudda "cudgel," Middle Low German kudde, kodde "hog," Old Norse koddi "pillow, scrotum," all from a Germanic base denoting something distended and unevenly shaped) + pese piece entry 1

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The first known use of codpiece was in the 15th century

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Cite this Entry

“Codpiece.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 27 Oct. 2020.

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