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or carack

[kar-uh k] /ˈkær ək/
a merchant vessel having various rigs, used especially by Mediterranean countries in the 15th and 16th centuries; galleon.
Origin of carrack
1350-1400; Middle English carrake < Middle French carraque < Spanish carraca, perhaps back formation from Arabic qarāqīr (plural of qurqūr ship of burden < Greek kérkouros), the -īr being taken as plural ending Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for carrack
Historical Examples
  • Francisco and his bible are no more credible than the carrack and the bishop.

  • In the sixteenth century the carrack often attained the size of 1,600 tons.

    Ancient and Modern Ships. George C. V. Holmes
  • In 1594 a Spanish carrack was destroyed which had 1,100 men on board.

    Ancient and Modern Ships. George C. V. Holmes
  • In 1602 a Portuguese carrack of 1,600 tons was captured at Cezimbra.

    Ancient and Modern Ships. George C. V. Holmes
  • "So I thought," pursued Mr. carrack, rolling his eyes and heaving an infant sigh from his bosom.

    Chanticleer Cornelius Mathews
  • Slowly and in great state, after all rolled Mrs. carrack's coach with herself and son within, and footman and coachman without.

    Chanticleer Cornelius Mathews
  • (For Mrs. carrack and her son:) And what are pomp and fashion, but the painted signs of good living where there is no life?

    Chanticleer Cornelius Mathews
  • One carrack especially, commanded by Lawrence Foglietta resisted the attacks of seven English ships.

  • The carrack, which was brought home in safety, was larger than any man-of-war or merchantman belonging to England.

  • She was a carrack of three hundred tons, and carried everything of most importance in the fleet.

    Amerigo Vespucci Frederick A. Ober
British Dictionary definitions for carrack


a galleon sailed in the Mediterranean as a merchantman in the 15th and 16th centuries
Word Origin
C14: from Old French caraque, from Old Spanish carraca, from Arabic qarāqīr merchant ships
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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Word Origin and History for carrack

merchant ship, late 14c., from Old French caraque "large, square-rigged sailing vessel," from Spanish carraca, related to Medieval Latin carraca, Italian caracca, all of uncertain origin, perhaps from Arabic qaraqir, plural of qurqur "merchant ship." The Arabic word perhaps was from Latin carricare (see charge (v.)) or Greek karkouros "boat, pinnacle."

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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