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caribou

[kar-uh-boo]
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noun, plural car·i·bous, (especially collectively) car·i·bou.
  1. any of several large, North American deer of the genus Rangifer, related to the reindeer of the Old World.

Origin of caribou

1665–75, Americanism; < Canadian French caribou, replacing earlier English caribo, both < Micmac γalipu derivative (agent noun) of γalipi- shovel snow < Proto-Algonquian *maka·lipi-; called the snow-shoveler from its habit of scraping aside snow with its front hoofs in search of food
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

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British Dictionary definitions for caribou

caribou

noun plural -bou or -bous
  1. a large deer, Rangifer tarandus, of Arctic regions of North America, having large branched antlers in the male and female: also occurs in Europe and Asia, where it is called a reindeerAlso called (Canadian): tuktu

Word Origin

C18: from Canadian French, of Algonquian origin; compare Micmac khalibu literally: scratcher

Caribou

noun
  1. Canadian a mixed drink containing wine and grain alcohol
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

Word Origin and History for caribou

n.

also cariboo, 1660s, from Canadian French caribou, from Micmac (Algonquian) kaleboo or a related Algonquian name, literally "pawer, scratcher," from its kicking snow aside to feed on moss and grass.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

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