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coign of vantage


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A favourable position for observation or action. The phrase comes from Shakespeare's Macbeth, ‘no jutty, frieze, Buttresss, nor coign of vantage, but this bird Hath made his pendent bed’, and was later popularized by Sir Walter Scott.

The word coign, meaning a projecting corner or cornerstone, is a variant of coin from Old French meaning ‘wedge, corner, die’, from Latin cuneus ‘wedge’.


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