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or gipsy

[jip-see] /ˈdʒɪp si/ Chiefly British
noun, plural Gipsies, adjective
Related forms
gipsydom, noun
gipsyesque, gipsyish, gipsylike, gipseian, adjective
gipsyhood, noun
gipsyism, noun


or (especially British) Gipsy, gipsy

[jip-see] /ˈdʒɪp si/
noun, plural Gypsies.
a member of a nomadic, Caucasoid people of generally swarthy complexion, who migrated originally from India, settling in various parts of Asia, Europe, and, most recently, North America.
Romany; the language of the Gypsies.
(lowercase) a person held to resemble a gypsy, especially in physical characteristics or in a traditionally ascribed freedom or inclination to move from place to place.
(lowercase) Informal. gypsy cab.
(lowercase) Informal. an independent, usually nonunion trucker, hauler, operator, etc.
(lowercase) Slang. a chorus dancer, especially in the Broadway theater.
(lowercase) gyp1 (def 4).
of or relating to the Gypsies.
(lowercase) Informal. working independently or without a license:
gypsy truckers.
Origin of Gypsy
1505-15; back formation of gipcyan, aphetic variant of Egyptian, from a belief that Gypsies came originally from Egypt
Related forms
gypsydom, noun
gypsyesque, gypsyish, gypsylike, gypseian, adjective
gypsyhood, noun
gypsyism, noun
non-Gypsy, noun, plural non-Gypsies. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for Gipsy
Historical Examples
  • If so, I must retire, and leave you to The care and guidance of the Gipsy queen.D.

    Tales of the Wonder Club, Volume III M. Y. Halidom (pseud. Dryasdust)
  • They were not sure whether she were most Saracen, Gipsy, or Jew.

    The Armourer's Prentices Charlotte M. Yonge
  • The more intelligent the Gipsy, the more he thinks of his speech, and the more care he takes of it.

    A History of the Gipsies Walter Simson
  • Well, do you know I always thought I should love a Gipsy life.

    The Christian Hall Caine
  • The fires from the skies made the barn burn, announced the Gipsy woman.

  • Was it some international password or a Gipsy note of universal import?

    The Prisoner Alice Brown
  • Yesterday we went all over Flodden; to-day we are going to Yetholm, the Gipsy capital.

    Story of My Life, volumes 1-3 Augustus J. C. Hare
  • So forward they went, creeping cautiously on all fours after the Gipsy woman.

    Red Cap Tales Samuel Rutherford Crockett
  • Those enemies who called him "the living skeleton" said it revealed his Gipsy origin.

    Heart and Science Wilkie Collins
  • It was just like a pocket, or like the shawl in which Gipsy women carry their children.

British Dictionary definitions for Gipsy


noun (pl) -sies
(sometimes not capital) a variant spelling of Gypsy
Derived Forms
Gipsyish, adjective
Gipsydom, noun
Gipsyhood, noun
Gipsy-like, adjective


noun (sometimes not capital) (pl) -sies
  1. a member of a people scattered throughout Europe and North America, who maintain a nomadic way of life in industrialized societies. They migrated from NW India from about the 9th century onwards
  2. (as modifier): a Gypsy fortune-teller
the language of the Gypsies; Romany
a person who looks or behaves like a Gypsy
Derived Forms
Gypsydom, Gipsydom, noun
Gypsyhood, Gipsyhood, noun
Gypsyish, Gipsyish, adjective
Gypsy-like, Gipsy-like, adjective
Word Origin
C16: from Egyptian, since they were thought to have come originally from Egypt
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for Gipsy


alternative spelling of gypsy.


also gipsy, c.1600, alteration of gypcian, a worn-down Middle English dialectal form of egypcien "Egyptian," from the supposed origin of these people. As an adjective, from 1620s.

Cognate with Spanish Gitano and close in sense to Turkish and Arabic Kipti "gypsy," literally "Coptic;" but in Middle French they were Bohémien (see bohemian), and in Spanish also Flamenco "from Flanders." "The gipsies seem doomed to be associated with countries with which they have nothing to do" [Weekley]. Zingari, the Italian and German name, is of unknown origin. Romany is from the people's own language, a plural adjective form of rom "man." Gipsy is the prefered spelling in England.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Slang definitions & phrases for Gipsy



  1. gypsy cab (1940s+)
  2. A truck driven by its owner rather than a union driver (1942+ Truckers)


To make a risky bet or call: You will find players consistently gypsying, flat-calling with kings up or less (1940s+ Gambling); (1950s+)

The Dictionary of American Slang, Fourth Edition by Barbara Ann Kipfer, PhD. and Robert L. Chapman, Ph.D.
Copyright (C) 2007 by HarperCollins Publishers.
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