medal definition by Webster's New World
- a small, flat piece of metal with a design or inscription stamped or inscribed on it, made to commemorate some event, or awarded for some distinguished action, merit, etc.
- a similar piece of metal with a religious figure or design, worn or carried as an aid to piety
Origin: French médaille ; from Italian medaglia ; from Vulgar Latin an unverified form medalia, a small coin ; from an unverified form medialia ; from Late Latin medialis, medial
- medallic adjective
medal definition by American Heritage Dictionary
- A flat piece of metal stamped with a design or an inscription commemorating an event or a person, often given as an award.
- A piece of metal stamped with a religious device, used as an object of veneration or commemoration.
Origin: French médaille, from Old French, from Italian medaglia, coin worth half a denarius, medal, from Vulgar Latin *medālia, coins worth half a denarius, from Late Latin mediālia, little halves, from neuter pl. of mediālis, of the middle, medial; see medial.
- me·dalˈlic adjective