a member of a Semitic people inhabiting Arabia and other countries of the Middle East.
a member of any Arabic-speaking people.
Also called Arabber [ey-rab-er] . Sometimes Offensive. a street peddler.
Archaic: Sometimes Offensive. street arab.
of or relating to Arabs.

1625–35; back formation from Latin Arabs (taken as plural) < Greek Áraps Arabian, an Arabian or Arab

anti-Arab, adjective, noun
non-Arab, noun, adjective
pro-Arab, adjective

The meanings “street peddler” and “vagabond” (in this second sense, also called a street arab) are sometimes perceived as insulting because of their reference to the historically nomadic peoples of the Arabian peninsula. The meaning “vagabond” has fallen into disuse. However, street vendors in Baltimore, Maryland, are called Arabs; in fact, it is a self-referential term—that is, one used by the vendors themselves.

The pronunciation of Arab as [ey-rab] with an initial [ey] sound and secondary stress on the second syllable, is sometimes used facetiously or disparagingly. It is especially common in the street-peddler and street-arab senses and is usually considered offensive in any sense. Unabridged

Arab. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
Cite This Source Link To arab
World English Dictionary
1.  a member of a Semitic people originally inhabiting Arabia, who spread throughout the Middle East, N Africa, and Spain during the seventh and eighth centuries ad
2.  a lively intelligent breed of horse, mainly used for riding
3.  (modifier) of or relating to the Arabs: the Arab nations
[C14: from Latin Arabs, from Greek Araps, from Arabic `Arab]

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009
Cite This Source
Word Origin & History

late 14c. (Arabiens), from O.Fr. Arabe, from L. Arabs (acc. Arabem), from Gk. Araps (gen. Arabos), from Arabic 'arab, indigenous name of the people, perhaps lit. "inhabitant of the desert" (rel. to Heb. arabha "desert"). Meaning "homeless little wanderer, child of the street" is from 1848, in ref. to
nomadic ways. Arab League formed in Cairo, March 22, 1945.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
Cite This Source
American Heritage
Abbreviations & Acronyms
  1. Arabia

  2. Arabian

  3. Arabic

The American Heritage® Abbreviations Dictionary, Third Edition
Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.
Cite This Source
Bible Dictionary

Arab definition

ambush, a city in the mountains of Judah (Josh. 15:52), now Er-Rabiyeh.

Easton's 1897 Bible Dictionary
Cite This Source
Copyright © 2014, LLC. All rights reserved.
  • Please Login or Sign Up to use the Recent Searches feature