What does the word gauntlet mean?

Usage examples for gauntlet

  1. " Now 'tis my turn," said his antagonist coolly, casting aside his gauntlet. – Robin Hood by J. Walker McSpadden
  2. That which at nothing the gauntlet has hurled, This, what's its name? – Faust by Goethe
  3. My friendship for Mr. Madison, my confidence in his wisdom and virtue, and my approbation of all his measures, and especially of his taking up at length the gauntlet against England, is known to all with whom I have ever conversed or corresponded on these measures. – Memoir, Correspondence, And Miscellanies, From The Papers Of Thomas Jefferson by Thomas Jefferson