Word Origin & History

1883, from Fr. rastaquouère "social intruder, upstart" (especially one of exaggerated manners and dress, from a Mediterranean or S.Amer. country), thus "dashing but untrustworthy foreigner," from S.Amer. Sp. rastacuero "upstart." Short form rasta attested from 1905.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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