The New International Encyclopædia/Besant, or Bezant
BESANT′, or BEZANT′. A circular piece of bullion, generally gold, without any impression, supposed to represent the old coinage of Byzantium brought home by the Crusaders, and hence of frequent occurrence as heraldic charges. Besants are generally introduced into the arms of banks, and also into those of individuals who have been specially connected with money. Similar figures, when not colored or (gold), or argent (silver), are known in heraldry by the general term of roundels. A bezanty cross is a cross composed of besant and bezanty, or bezantée, is a term used when the shield, or any particular charge, is strewed with besants.