corsair

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English[edit]

Spanish ship fighting Corsairs

Etymology[edit]

From French corsaire, from Medieval Latin cursārius (pirate).

Pronunciation[edit]

Noun[edit]

corsair (plural corsairs)

  1. A French privateer, especially from the port of St-Malo
  2. A privateer or pirate in general
    • 1840, Charles Dickens, Barnaby Rudge, [Chapter 34.]
      "If I had been born a corsair or a pirate, a brigand, genteel highwayman or patriot -- and they're the same thing," thought Mr. Tappertit, musing among the nine-pins, "I should have been all right. But to drag out a [sic] ignoble existence unbeknown to mankind in general -- patience! I will be famous yet."
  3. The ship of privateers or pirates, especially of French nationality
  4. A nocturnal assassin bug of the genus Rasahus, found in the southern USA.

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