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[sel-vuh] /ˈsɛl və/
a tropical rain forest, as that in the Amazon basin of South America.
Origin of selva
Brazilian Portuguese
1840-50; < Brazilian Portuguese; Portuguese: forest < Latin silva Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for selvas
Historical Examples
  • At last the selvas came to the Purús River, and down this it steamed.

    Lost in the Wilds of Brazil

    James H. Foster
  • The selvas spent the winter in Rome, the rest of the year at Subiaco.

    The Saint Antonio Fogazzaro
  • She and Signorina d'Arxel, wishing to surprise the selvas, had forbidden him to tell.

    The Saint Antonio Fogazzaro
  • I wished to speak to you when we were on our way to the selvas', but you were in haste to be there, and so it was not possible.

    The Saint Antonio Fogazzaro
  • "The selvas told me you lived in the Veneto," the Padre added.

    The Saint Antonio Fogazzaro
  • He said he would also send him the young girl who was with the selvas.

    The Saint Antonio Fogazzaro
  • The man was a muleteer, sent by the selvas to look for Benedetto.

    The Saint Antonio Fogazzaro
  • At first the meetings had been held at the selvas' apartment, in Via Arenula.

    The Saint Antonio Fogazzaro
  • He said he was aware that Jeanne was a friend of the selvas.

    The Saint Antonio Fogazzaro
  • The selvas had often interrupted di Leyni with exclamations of surprise and indignation.

    The Saint Antonio Fogazzaro
British Dictionary definitions for selvas


dense equatorial forest, esp in the Amazon basin, characterized by tall broad-leaved evergreen trees, epiphytes, lianas, etc
a tract of such forest
Word Origin
C19: from Spanish and Portuguese, from Latin silva forest
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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