1911 Encyclopædia Britannica/Trapeze

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TRAPEZE, or Trapese, a form of swing, consisting of a crossbar suspended by ropes and used for gymnastic exercises, acrobatic displays and the like. The name was so applied in French (trapèze) from the resemblance of the apparatus to a "trapezium" or irregular four-sided figure. The Greek τραπέζιον is a diminutive of τράπεζα, a table, literally a four-footed or four-legged object, being a shortened form of τετράπεζα (τετρα-, four, and πέζα, foot).