early 14c., from Old French creste "tuft, comb" (Modern French crête), from Latin crista "tuft, plume," perhaps related to word for "hair" (such as crinis), but it also was used for crest of a cock or a helmet. Said by Watkins to be from an extended form of PIE root *sker- (2) "to turn, bend." Replaced Old English hris.
late 14c., "provide with a crest," from Old French crester, from creste (see crest (n.)). Meaning "to come over the top of" is from 1832. Related: Crested; cresting.
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