Via Middle English from Middle Dutch malemeseye, from Italian via Old French, ultimately from Ancient Greek Μονεμβασία (Monembasía, “Monemvasia”, a city on the Peloponnese), from μόνος (mónos, “only one”) + ἔμβασις (émbasis, “entering into”, ἐν + βάσις).
- A sweet, fortified wine made in Madeira, originally from the malvasia grape.
- 1621, Democritus Junior [pseudonym; Robert Burton], The Anatomy of Melancholy, Oxford: Printed by Iohn Lichfield and Iames Short, for Henry Cripps, OCLC 216894069; The Anatomy of Melancholy: […], 2nd corrected and augmented edition, Oxford: Printed by John Lichfield and James Short, for Henry Cripps, 1624, OCLC 54573970, (please specify |partition=1, 2, or 3):, New York, published 2001, page 223:
- All black wines, over-hot, compound, strong, thick drinks, as muscadine, malmsey, alicant, rumney, brown bastard, metheglin, and the like […]
- Synonym: malvoisie