giaour

giaour

[jou-uhr, jou-er]
noun Turkish.
an unbeliever; a non-Muslim, especially a Christian.

Origin:
1555–65; earlier gower, gour < Turkish gâvur < Persian gaur, variant of gabr Zoroastrian, non-Muslim; spelling giaour < French, with gi- representing Turk palatalized g, later taken as spelling for j

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giaour (ˈdʒaʊə)
 
n
a derogatory term for a non-Muslim, esp a Christian, used esp by the Turks
 
[C16: from Turkish giaur unbeliever, from Persian gaur, variant of gäbr]

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Word Origin & History

giaour
1564, Turk. term of contempt for non-Muslims, from Pers. gaur, variant of gabr "fire-worshipper," originally applied to the adherents of the Zoroastrian religion.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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