1911 Encyclopædia Britannica/Sequin

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SEQUIN (the French form of Ital. zecchino, zecchino d'oro), the name of a Venetian gold coin, first minted about 1280, and in use until the fall of the Venetian Republic. It was worth about nine shillings. It bore on the obverse a figure of St Mark blessing the banner of the republic, held by a kneeling doge, and on the reverse a figure of Christ. Milan and Genoa also issued gold sequins. The word in Italian was formed from zecca, Span. zeca, a mint, an adaptation of Arabic sikka, a die for coins. In the sense of “newly-coined,” the Hindi or Persian sikka, anglicised sicca, was specifically used of a rupee, containing more silver than the East India Company's rupee, coined in 1793 by the Bengal government. The “sicca-rupee” ceased to be circulated after 1836. The term “sequin” is now used for small discs made of thin pieces of metal, tinfoil, celluloid or other composite material, highly glazed and brightly coloured, and applied as trimming for ladies' dresses.