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Black Maria

[muh-rahy-uh] /məˈraɪ ə/
Origin of Black Maria
An Americanism dating back to 1840-50 Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for Black Maria
Historical Examples
  • Day the wheel of the Black Maria peeled off my shoe at Leonard's corner.

    Ulysses James Joyce
  • Then does he go about in Black Maria escorted by a policeman?

    The Heart of a Woman Emmuska Orczy, Baroness Orczy
  • They had in England been in a different kind of van—Black Maria.

    The Awful Australian Valerie Desmond
  • Not an "Archie" or a "Black Maria" but something smaller than a football.

    The Soul of Susan Yellam

    Horace Annesley Vachell
  • Keep the Black Maria, and when the play goes we will have a mighty reckoning.

    Bambi Marjorie Benton Cooke
  • Ye got to hurry or they'll have her in the Black Maria on the way to the Tombs.

    Felix O'Day F. Hopkinson Smith
  • Black Maria, the sombre van in which prisoners are conveyed from the police court to prison.

    The Slang Dictionary John Camden Hotten
  • To Lee it felt uncanny to sit trapped and blindfolded in this "Black Maria" of a car while unseen rays and cameras went over him.

    The Brain Alexander Blade
  • As it wheeled past me on the run I could see my associates huddled together in the Black Maria on their way to the bastile.

    My Adventures with Your Money George Graham Rice
  • This "Black Maria" is an artistically painted, swift-geared, smooth-running, attractively screened automobile.

British Dictionary definitions for Black Maria

Black Maria

a police van for transporting prisoners
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Slang definitions & phrases for Black Maria

Black Maria

noun phrase

A patrol wagon used to carry police prisoners

[late 1830s+; origin unknown]

The Dictionary of American Slang, Fourth Edition by Barbara Ann Kipfer, PhD. and Robert L. Chapman, Ph.D.
Copyright (C) 2007 by HarperCollins Publishers.
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