/fus"cheuhn/, n.
1. a stout fabric of cotton and flax.
2. a fabric of stout twilled cotton or of cotton and low-quality wool, with a short nap or pile.
3. inflated or turgid language in writing or speaking: Fustian can't disguise the author's meager plot.
4. made of fustian: a fustian coat; fustian bed linen.
5. pompous or bombastic, as language: fustian melodrama.
6. worthless; cheap: fustian knaves and dupes.
[1150-1200; ME < OF fustaigne < ML fustaneum, perh. a deriv. of L fustis stick, cudgel (LL: trunk; cf. FUSTY), if a trans. of L xylinus, Gk (Septuagint) xýlina lína cotton, lit., linen from wood; Fostat, a suburb of Cairo, has also been proposed as the source of fustaneum]
Syn. 3. bombast, rant, claptrap.

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      fabric originally made by weaving two sets of cotton wefts, or fillings, on a linen warp, popular during the European Middle Ages. The word has come to denote a class of heavy cotton fabrics, some of which have pile surfaces, including moleskin, velveteen, and corduroy.

      Fustian probably originated in Al-Fusṭāṭ, now part of Cairo, about AD 200, and eventually spread to Spain and Italy, where there were guilds of fustian weavers in the 13th century. As the material became popular its production spread northward; southern Germany and Switzerland had a rising fustian industry in the 14th century, and French weavers were making fringed and roughened fustians in the 16th. These early fustians appear to have been smooth fabrics with a soft raised nap; eventually, a ribbed pile surface was developed. By the 19th century cotton was being used for the warp as well as the filling.

      In all fustians one of the sets of filling yarns is made up of floats (yarns that skip over two or more adjacent warp yarns). When a pile fabric is desired, the weft floats must be cut, a process originally performed by hand with a fustian knife but now done mechanically. The pile is brushed, sheared, and singed, and finally the fabric is bleached and dyed.

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Universalium. 2010.


Look at other dictionaries:

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  • Fustian — A term given to the class of cotton fabrics which includes corduroys, moleskins, constitution cords, cords, etc., used for clothing purposes. Beaverteens, imperials and swansdowns are also fustians. They are all constructed to give a very strong …   Dictionary of the English textile terms

  • Fustian — Fus tian, a. 1. Made of fustian. [1913 Webster] 2. Pompous; ridiculously tumid; inflated; bombastic; as, fustian history. Walpole. [1913 Webster] …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Fustian — Fus tian, n. [OE. fustan, fustian, OF. fustaine, F. futaine, It. fustagno, fr. LL. fustaneum, fustanum; cf. Pr. fustani, Sp. fustan. So called from Fust[=a]t, i. e., Cairo, where it was made.] 1. A kind of coarse twilled cotton or cotton and… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • fustian — [fus′chən, fust′yən] n. [ME < OFr fustaigne < ML fustaneum (< L fustis, wooden stick) used as transl. of Gr xylinon < xylinos, wooden (in LXX, cotton)] 1. Historical a coarse cloth of cotton and linen 2. a thick cotton cloth with a… …   English World dictionary

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  • fustian — thick cotton cloth, c.1200, from O.Fr. fustaigne, from M.L. fustaneum, probably from L. fustis staff, stick of wood, probably a loan translation of Gk. xylina lina linens of wood (i.e. cotton ), but the M.L. word also is sometimes said to be from …   Etymology dictionary

  • fustian — n rant, rodomontade, *bombast, rhapsody …   New Dictionary of Synonyms

  • fustian — [adj] pompous arrogant, boastful, bombastic, conceited, flaunting, high and mighty*, highfalutin, lofty, ostentatious, pontifical, portentous, pretentious, puffed up*, ranting, self centered, self important, vain, vainglorious; concepts… …   New thesaurus

  • fustian — ► NOUN ▪ a thick, hard wearing twilled cloth. ORIGIN from Latin pannus fustaneus cloth from Fostat , a suburb of Cairo …   English terms dictionary

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