- any award, honor, or laudatory notice: The play received accolades from the press.
- a light touch on the shoulder with the flat side of the sword or formerly by an embrace, done in the ceremony of conferring knighthood.
- the ceremony itself.
- Music. a brace joining several staves.
- an archivolt or hood molding having more or less the form of an ogee arch.
- a decoration having more or less the form of an ogee arch, cut into a lintel or flat arch.
- strong praise or approval; acclaim
- an award or honour
- the ceremonial gesture used to confer knighthood, originally an embrace, now a touch on the shoulder with a sword
- a rare word for brace (def. 7)
- architect a curved ornamental moulding, esp one having the shape of an ogee arch
1620s, from French accolade (16c.), from Provençal acolada or Italian accollata, ultimately from noun use of a fem. past participle from Vulgar Latin *accollare “to embrace around the neck,” from Latin ad- “to” (see ad-) + collum “neck” (see collar (n.)).
The original sense is of an embrace about the neck or the tapping of a sword on the shoulders to confer knighthood. Extended meaning “praise, award” is from 1852. Also see -ade. Earlier was accoll (mid-14c.), from Old French acolee “an embrace, kiss, especially that given to a new-made knight,” from verb acoler. The French noun in the 16c. was transformed to accolade, with the foreign suffix.