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[nahy-jeer-ee-uh] /naɪˈdʒɪər i ə/
a republic in W Africa: member of the Commonwealth of Nations; formerly a British colony and protectorate. 356,669 sq. mi. (923,773 sq. km).
Capital: Abuja.
Official name Federal Republic of Nigeria.
Related forms
Nigerian, adjective, noun
pro-Nigerian, adjective, noun
Can be confused
Niger, Nigeria. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for nigerian
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • It's a good sign, since we know that we are approaching nigerian territory.

    Captured at Tripoli Percy F. Westerman
  • These are Armenian, or would you prefer a Honolulan or a nigerian?

    Frenzied Fiction Stephen Leacock
  • That student should in propriety have been followed by a nigerian, Liberian, or Senegambian, carrying his portmanteau.

    Your United States Arnold Bennett
  • Ghat is an important centre of the caravan trade between the nigerian states and the seaports of the Mediterranean (see Tripoli).

  • Had just distinguished himself in this nigerian expedition--mentioned in despatches last week.

    The Testing of Diana Mallory

    Mrs. Humphry Ward
British Dictionary definitions for nigerian


of or relating to Nigeria or its inhabitants
a native or inhabitant of Nigeria


a republic in West Africa, on the Gulf of Guinea: Lagos annexed by the British in 1861; protectorates of Northern and Southern Nigeria formed in 1900 and united as a colony in 1914; gained independence as a member of the Commonwealth in 1960 (membership suspended from 1995 to 1999 following human rights violations); Eastern Region seceded as the Republic of Biafra for the duration of the severe civil war (1967–70); ruled by military governments from 1966. It consists of a belt of tropical rain forest in the south, with semidesert in the extreme north and highlands in the east; the main export is petroleum. Official language: English; Hausa, Ibo, and Yoruba are the chief regional languages. Religion: animist, Muslim, and Christian. Currency: naira. Capital: Abuja. Pop: 174 507 539 (2013 est). Area: 923 773 sq km (356 669 sq miles)
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 nigerian


African nation, named for river Niger, which runs through it, + -ia. Related: Nigerian.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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nigerian in Culture

Nigeria definition

A nation in western Africa on the Gulf of Guinea (an arm of the Atlantic Ocean), bordered by Niger to the north, Chad and Cameroon to the east, and Benin to the west. Lagos is the capital and largest city.

Note: With over 110 million inhabitants, Nigeria is Africa's most populous country.
Note: Nigeria has been independent from Britain since 1960, and its independent history has been marked by bloodshed and instability. An ill-fated separatist movement established the secessionist state of Biafra in southeastern Nigeria from 1967 to 1970.
Note: The city-state of Benin, in what is now Nigeria, flourished from the fourteenth to the seventeenth centuries as a center of commerce and culture. It was famous for its cast-gold sculptures.
The New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition
Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.
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