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An arrangement of five objects or marks with one at each corner of a rectangle or square and one at the center.
[Latin quīncūnx, quīncūnc-, five twelfths : quīnque, five; see penkwe in Indo-European roots + ūncia, twelfth part of a unit; see ounce1.]
American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright © 2016 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
1. a group of five objects arranged in the shape of a rectangle with one at each of the four corners and the fifth in the centre
2. (Botany) botany a quincuncial arrangement of sepals or petals in the bud
3. (Astrology) astrology an aspect of 150° between two planets
[C17: from Latin: five twelfths, from quinque five + uncia twelfth; in ancient Rome, this was a coin worth five twelfths of an as2 and marked with five spots]
Collins English Dictionary – Complete and Unabridged, 12th Edition 2014 © HarperCollins Publishers 1991, 1994, 1998, 2000, 2003, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2011, 2014
quin•cunx(ˈkwɪŋ kʌŋks, ˈkwɪn-)
an arrangement of five objects in a square or rectangle, one at each corner and one in the middle.
[1640–50; < Latin: five twelfths =quinc-, variant of quīnque- quinque- + -unx, s. -unc- comb. form of uncia twelfth (see ounce1); orig. a Roman coin worth five twelfths of an as and marked with a quincunx of spots]
quin•cun′cial (-ʃəl) adj.
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