From The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.48:

Vair \Vair\ (v[^a]r), n. [F. vair, from OF. vair, a., L. varius
   various, variegated. See Various, and cf. Meniver.]
   The skin of the squirrel, much used in the fourteenth century
   as fur for garments, and frequently mentioned by writers of
   that period in describing the costly dresses of kings,
   nobles, and prelates. It is represented in heraldry by a
   series of small shields placed close together, and
   alternately white and blue. --Fairholt.
   [1913 Webster]

         No vair or ermine decked his garment.    --Sir W.
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   Counter vair (Her.), a fur resembling vair, except in the
      arrangement of the patches or figures.
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