1. A handful.

2. A division of the Roman army numbering sixty men exclusive of officers, any small body of soldiers; a company.

3. Originally, a napkin; later, an ornamental band or scarf worn upon the left arm as a part of the vestments of a priest in the Roman Catholic Church. It is sometimes worn in the English Church service.

Origin: L. Manipulus, maniplus, a handful, a certain number of soldiers; manus hand + root of plere to fill, plenus full: cf. F.maniple. See Manual, and Full.

(01 Mar 1998)

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