Barbary


Barbary
Barbary c.1300, "foreign lands" (especially non-Christian lands), from L. barbaria (see BARBARIAN (Cf. barbarian)). Meaning "Saracens living in coastal North Africa" is attested from 1590s, via Fr. (O.Fr. barbarie), from Arabic Barbar, Berber, ancient Arabic name for the inhabitants of N.Africa beyond Egypt. Perhaps a native name, perhaps an Arabic word, from barbara "to babble confusedly," but this might be ultimately from Gk. barbaria. "The actual relations (if any) of the Arabic and Gr[eek] words cannot be settled; but in European langs. barbaria, Barbarie, Barbary, have from the first been treated as identical with L. barbaria, Byzantine Gr[eek] barbaria land of barbarians" [OED].

Etymology dictionary. 2014.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Barbary — Bar ba*ry, n. [Fr. Ar. Barbar the people of Barbary.] The countries on the north coast of Africa from Egypt to the Atlantic. Hence: A Barbary horse; a barb. [Obs.] Also, a kind of pigeon. [1913 Webster] {Barbary ape} (Zo[ o]l.), an ape ({Macacus… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Barbary — Le nom a toujours été fréquent en Dordogne, on le rencontre aussi dans le Nord et en Belgique (variantes : Barbry, Barbery). C est le plus souvent une variante de Barbarin (86, 17), lui même diminutif de Barbare (80, 59). Ce dernier nom… …   Noms de famille

  • Barbary — /bahr beuh ree/, n. a region in N Africa, extending from W of Egypt to the Atlantic Ocean and including the former Barbary States. * * * ▪ historical region, Africa also called  Barbary States        former designation for the coastal region of… …   Universalium

  • Barbary — The four basic surnames Barbary, Barbe, Barber, and Barbera, all of whom have quite different origins, have between them produced over one hundred cognate, intermixed and overlapping forms. Barbary is of French Provencal origins, and celebrates… …   Surnames reference

  • Barbary — Bar•ba•ry [[t]ˈbɑr bə ri[/t]] n. geg a region in N Africa, extending from W of Egypt to the Atlantic Ocean and including the former Barbary States …   From formal English to slang

  • Barbary — /ˈbabəri/ (say bahbuhree) noun a region in northern Africa, extending from west of Egypt to the Atlantic, and including the former Barbary States …   Australian English dictionary

  • Barbary — noun a region of northern Africa on the Mediterranean coast between Egypt and Gibraltar; was used as a base for pirates from the 16th to 19th centuries • Instance Hypernyms: ↑geographical area, ↑geographic area, ↑geographical region, ↑geographic… …   Useful english dictionary

  • barbary — adjective barbarian; non Christian …   Wiktionary

  • Barbary — noun The Mediterranean coastal areas of North Africa that were used as a base by pirates in the 16th to 19th centuries …   Wiktionary

  • barbary — sb. == foreign lands. Ps. cxiii. 1 …   Oldest English Words


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