World English Dictionary
Karoo or Karroo (kəˈruː)
n , pl -roos
1.  any of several high arid plateaus in South Africa, esp the Central Karoo and the Little Karoo. The highveld, north of the Central Karoo, is sometimes called the Northern Karoo
2.  a period or rock system in Southern Africa equivalent to the period or system extending from the Upper Carboniferous to the Lower Jurassic: divided into Lower and Upper Karoo
3.  of, denoting, or formed in the Karoo period
[C18: from Afrikaans karo, probably from Khoikhoi garo desert]
Karroo or Karroo
[C18: from Afrikaans karo, probably from Khoikhoi garo desert]

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
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Word Origin & History

"barren table land in S. Africa," 1789, said to be from a Hottentot word meaning "dry."
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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American Heritage
Science Dictionary
karoo also karroo   (kə-r')  Pronunciation Key 
A semiarid plateau. The most well-known karoos cover nearly 400,000 sq km (156,000 sq mi) of southern Africa. Karoos are terrace shaped and characterized by low scrub vegetation.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary
Copyright © 2002. Published by Houghton Mifflin. All rights reserved.
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