sais

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See also: Sais and šais

English[edit]

John Edmund Taylor, “Poor Jack” and his Syce (1881), Wellcome Collection, London, United Kingdom

Etymology 1[edit]

From Hindi (Hindustani), from Arabic سَائِس ‎(sāʾis, stableman, groom), from سَاس ‎(sās, to tend a horse).

Alternative forms[edit]

Pronunciation[edit]

Noun[edit]

sais ‎(plural saises)

  1. (India) A groom, or servant with responsibility for the horses.
    • 1808, Thomas Williamson, Oriental Field Sports; being a Complete, Detailed, and Accurate Description of the Wild Sports of the East [...] In Two Volumes, volume II, London: Printed by W[illiam] Bulmer and Co. Cleveland-Row, St. James's; for Edward Orme, Bond-Street, the corner of Brook-Street, and B. Crosby and Co. Stationers' Court, OCLC 225413285, page 213:
      Not one of them [horse dealers] will venture a horse, he is about to sell, in the stables of the intended purchaser, unless attended by one of his own syces, or grooms, who both knows and is known by the animal. If the horse be very old, or naturally dull, the syce takes care to ply him with spices and other stimulants; and if vicious, opium, and other anodynes are given; so that the horse is absolutely in a state of disguise.
    • 1849 April 19, “General Return of Casualties in the Army of the Punjaub in the Action at Goojerat on the 21st February 1849, between the British Forces under the Personal Command of General the Right Hon. Hugh Baron Gough, G.C.B., Commander-in-Chief of the Forces in India, and the Rebel Army under the Sirdar Chuttur Singh and Rajah Shere Singh”, in The Indian News, and Chronicle of Eastern Affairs, number 160, London, OCLC 64234884, page 179:
      4th Troop 1st Brigade—3 rank and file, 1 syce, 17 horses, killed; []
    • 1888, Rudyard Kipling, “Miss Youghal’s Sais”, in Plain Tales from the Hills, Calcutta: Thacker, Spink and Co.; London: W. Thacker & Co., OCLC 228690273:
      Here all trace of him was lost, until a sais or groom met me on the Simla Mall with this extraordinary note.
    • 1890, Flora Annie Webster Steel; Grace Gardiner, “The Duties of the Servants”, in The Complete Indian Housekeeper and Cook: Giving the Duties of Mistress and Servants, the General Management of the House and Practical Recipes for Cooking in all its Branches, Edinburgh: F. Murray, OCLC 228145908; reprinted Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2010, 978-1-108-02193-7, page 68:
      THE DUTIES OF THE SAIS OR GROOM. [] Now, if the good house-mother's proudest boast is that not even "the cattle within her gate" fail to feel her kindly care, she will often find it necessary to take an active part in teaching the sais his duty, and seeing that the horses receive proper attention. [] The old plan of a sais and a grass-cutter to each horse is a thing of the past, and the number of saises or grooms should have reference merely to the amount of harnessing and out-work necessary during the day.
    • 1906, Charles A[tmore] Sherring, “Superstitions”, in Western Tibet and the British Borderland; the Sacred Country of Hindus and Buddhists, with an Account of the Government, Religion, and Customs of its Peoples, London: Edward Arnold, OCLC 3827957, page 100:
      But apart from the story of the havildar, my own syce, a hillman who attends my pony, has actually seen two ghosts, with one of whom he held a long conversation.
    • 1974, Apa Pant, “Dreams and Destinations”, in A Moment in Time, Bombay: Orient Longman, ISBN 837947596, page 76:
      The horse also, as if it had its own premonitions, refused to get on to those rickety planks, though the rest of the party had negotiated them safely. The sais (horse attendant), who had no such anxieties, crossed ahead of us and struggled for some minutes to drag the poor frightened animal, with myself on its back, across the chasm.
    • 1987, Sara Banerji, The Wedding of Jayanthi Mandel, London: Victor Gollancz Ltd., ISBN 978-0-575-03984-1:
      We have not been able to get a good syce for our animal, and have had to make do with a young and inexperienced fellow.
    • 2010, Rudyard Kipling; James Daley, comp., “The Maltese Cat”, in Great Horse Stories, Mineola, N.Y.: Dover Publications, ISBN 978-0-486-47669-8, page 95:
      Each pony had his sais, his groom, who lived and ate and slept with the animal, and had betted a good deal more than he could afford on the result of the game. There was no chance of anything going wrong, but to make sure, each sais was shampooing the legs of his pony to the last minute. Behind the saises sat as many of the Skidars' regiment as had leave to attend the match []
  2. (Malaya, dated) usually syce: chauffeur, driver.
    A 1919 photograph of M. C. Westerman, Mr. and Mrs. Soeters, and a chauffeur, in Ambarawa, Central Java, Dutch East Indies
    • 1935, Ralph Lionel German, Handbook to British Malaya, 1935, [London]: [R. L. German]: Obtainable from the Malay Information Agency, Waterlow and Sons, OCLC 27325434, page 50:
      House servants are usually either Chinese or Tamil, the former predominating, especially in towns of any size. The domestic staff will in general consist of a houseboy (in large establishments two houseboys), a water carrier (tukang ayer), whose duties include washing dishes and preparing baths, a cook, a gardener, a chauffeur or sais, and perhaps an ayah (if Chinese, amah) or two, according to the size of the family.
    • 1988, Margaret Pemberton, A Multitude of Sins, New York, N.Y.: Bantam Books, OCLC 746914751:
      [A]fter their first few days there he had hired a syce, a Malay chauffeur. The syce, who had been squatting down, sheltering in the shade of the car, jumped to his feet at their approach, opening the doors for them with an efficient flourish.
    • 1994, Laurence C[arl] Bergquist, Destiny: A Southeast Asia Saga, 1928–1953: Singapore, Malaya, Indonesia, Pacifica, Calif.: Pacifica Press, ISBN 978-0-935553-06-2, page 51:
      Each establishment had a retinue of Chinese or Malay servants, on average consisting of a cook, one or two "house boys," a tukang kebun (gardener), a sais (chauffeur), and an ayah or amah (maid or nurse) to take care of ironing []
    • 1999, Mary Sydney Burke, The Soldier's Wife: Peace and War, London: Janus Publishing Company, ISBN 978-1-85756-490-7, page 128:
      The lady – a very elegant Romanian by birth – arrived with her daughter Miriam, the English governess, the secretary, a detective, and last of all the syce, or chauffeur, who seated himself in the garden rather than wait in the large Rolls-Royce parked outside, with the family crest placed above the number plate.
    • 2005, Christopher [Alan] Bayly; Tim[othy Norman] Harper, Forgotten Armies: The Fall of British Asia, 1941–1945, Cambridge, Mass.: The Belknap Press of Harvard University Press, ISBN 978-0-674-01748-1, page 53:
      [T]he expansion of the service economy, for the home, the office and the municipality, had created a more mixed labouring world. A wealthy European or Asian home would bring together a Chinese amah, or maid, a Malay syce, or chauffeur, and an Indian kebun, or gardener, operating through a Malay lingua franca. On a larger scale, in the invisible city, ethnic communities were pushed closer together, often for the first time.
Quotations[edit]

Etymology 2[edit]

Nonstandard spelling of says.

Pronunciation[edit]

Verb[edit]

sais

  1. Used to represent an eye dialect or nonstandard pronunciation of says.
    • 1855 August, “Editor's Drawer”, in Harper's New Monthly Magazine, volume XI, number LXIII, New York, N.Y.: Harper & Brothers, Publishers, 329 & 331 Pearl Street, Franklin Square, OCLC 1641392, page 425:
      'Yes,' sais I, 'what's left of me; but, good gracious,' sais I, 'you have got the 'heaves.' I hope it ain't catchin'.
    • 2000, Frederic Remington, “Sun-Down Leflare's Warm Spot”, in John D. Seelye, editor, Stories of the Old West: Tales of the Mining Camp, Cavalry Troop, & Cattle Ranch, Norman, Ok.: University of Oklahoma Press, ISBN 978-0-8061-3283-9, page 203:
      Well, he tak some young man un he go off to Alsaroke to steal horse, un I seet roun' un watch dat woman. She watch me. Pretty soon camp was hunt de buffalo, un I was hunt Snow-Owl's woman. Every one was excite, un dey don' tak no 'count of me. I see de woman go up leetle coulie for stray horse, un I follar her. I sais, 'How do? You come be my woman. We run off to Meestar MacDonnail's tradehouse.' [] She sais she afraid.

Anagrams[edit]


French[edit]

Pronunciation[edit]

Verb[edit]

sais

  1. first-person singular present indicative of savoir
  2. second-person singular present indicative of savoir

Anagrams[edit]


Indonesian[edit]

Noun[edit]

sais

  1. driver

Portuguese[edit]

Pronunciation[edit]

Verb[edit]

sais

  1. second-person singular (tu) present indicative of sair

Noun[edit]

sais m

  1. plural of sal

Tok Pisin[edit]

Etymology[edit]

From English size.

Noun[edit]

sais

  1. size