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or gipsy

[jip-see] /ˈdʒɪp si/ Chiefly British
noun, plural Gipsies, adjective
Related forms
gipsydom, noun
gipsyesque, gipsyish, gipsylike, gipseian, adjective
gipsyhood, noun
gipsyism, noun


[jip-see] /ˈdʒɪp si/
noun, plural Gypsies.
a member of a nomadic, Caucasoid people of generally swarthy complexion, who migrated originally from India, settling in various parts of Asia, Europe, and, most recently, North America.
Romany; the language of the Gypsies.
(lowercase) a person held to resemble a gypsy, especially in physical characteristics or in a traditionally ascribed freedom or inclination to move from place to place.
(lowercase) Informal. gypsy cab.
(lowercase) Informal. an independent, usually nonunion trucker, hauler, operator, etc.
(lowercase) Slang. a chorus dancer, especially in the Broadway theater.
(lowercase) gyp1 (def 4).
of or relating to the Gypsies.
(lowercase) Informal. working independently or without a license:
gypsy truckers.
Also, especially British, Gipsy, gipsy.
Origin of Gypsy
1505-15; back formation of gipcyan, aphetic variant of Egyptian, from a belief that Gypsies came originally from Egypt
Related forms
gypsydom, noun
gypsyesque, gypsyish, gypsylike, gypseian, adjective
gypsyhood, noun
gypsyism, noun
non-Gypsy, noun, plural non-Gypsies. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for Gipsy
Historical Examples
  • They were not sure whether she were most Saracen, Gipsy, or Jew.

    The Armourer's Prentices Charlotte M. Yonge
  • Again I saw the dark, absorbed face of the Gipsy as he studied my future.

    Ruggles of Red Gap Harry Leon Wilson
  • It was like a Gipsy's shed, where everything had to be done in common.

    His Masterpiece Emile Zola
  • Well, do you know I always thought I should love a Gipsy life.

    The Christian Hall Caine
  • Some say his father was an Englishman, some say a Jew, and some say his mother was a Gipsy.

    The Eternal City Hall Caine
  • Her hair was a black as a Gipsy's, and her face as brown as a berry.

    The Manxman Hall Caine
  • Who would not like to live like a Gipsy in a wood, if all the year round was like that month of May?

    The Fairchild Family Mary Martha Sherwood
  • But it was not really a Gipsy, but Oh, who had taken the shape of a Gipsy.

  • Was it some international password or a Gipsy note of universal import?

    The Prisoner Alice Brown
  • She patted the greyhounds, and said Gipsy, which was mine, was the prettiest.

    The Confessions of Harry Lorrequer, Complete Charles James Lever (1806-1872)
British Dictionary definitions for Gipsy


noun (pl) -sies
(sometimes not capital) a variant spelling of Gypsy
Derived Forms
Gipsyish, adjective
Gipsydom, noun
Gipsyhood, noun
Gipsy-like, adjective


noun (sometimes not capital) (pl) -sies
  1. a member of a people scattered throughout Europe and North America, who maintain a nomadic way of life in industrialized societies. They migrated from NW India from about the 9th century onwards
  2. (as modifier): a Gypsy fortune-teller
the language of the Gypsies; Romany
a person who looks or behaves like a Gypsy
Derived Forms
Gypsydom, Gipsydom, noun
Gypsyhood, Gipsyhood, noun
Gypsyish, Gipsyish, adjective
Gypsy-like, Gipsy-like, adjective
Word Origin
C16: from Egyptian, since they were thought to have come originally from Egypt
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 Gipsy


alternative spelling of gypsy.


also gipsy, c.1600, alteration of gypcian, a worn-down Middle English dialectal form of egypcien "Egyptian," from the supposed origin of these people. As an adjective, from 1620s.

Cognate with Spanish Gitano and close in sense to Turkish and Arabic Kipti "gypsy," literally "Coptic;" but in Middle French they were Bohémien (see bohemian), and in Spanish also Flamenco "from Flanders." "The gipsies seem doomed to be associated with countries with which they have nothing to do" [Weekley]. Zingari, the Italian and German name, is of unknown origin. Romany is from the people's own language, a plural adjective form of rom "man." Gipsy is the prefered spelling in England.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Slang definitions & phrases for Gipsy



  1. gypsy cab (1940s+)
  2. A truck driven by its owner rather than a union driver (1942+ Truckers)


To make a risky bet or call: You will find players consistently gypsying, flat-calling with kings up or less (1940s+ Gambling); (1950s+)

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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