1An English name for: the écu, a French gold coin of the 15th and 16th centuries, with a value of four English shillings.
The name continued to be used of the silver écu of the late 16th century, which retained the same denominational value.
2Used punningly: the baldness caused by syphilis.
Mid 16th century; earliest use found in Nicholas Udall (1504–1556), schoolmaster and playwright. From French + crown, so called to distinguish it from the coin of the same name minted in England.