- one of a body of native Algerian cavalry in the French service.
- (formerly) a cavalryman in the Turkish army.
Origin of spahi
1555–65; < Middle French < Turkish sipahi < Persian sipāhī. Cf. sepoy
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018
Examples from the Web for spahi
Another traveller was coming in to his night's rest, and he was a Spahi.
While I looked at him the Spahi suddenly gave a tug at the cord to which he was attached.
He cast a vicious look at the Spahi and went out into the darkness.
The Spahi was a magnificent man, tall, lithe, bronze-brown and muscular.
The Spahi stared at my cigar so persistently that I was obliged to offer him one.
- (formerly) an irregular cavalryman in the Turkish armed forces
- a member of a body of native Algerian cavalrymen in the French armed forces: disbanded after Algerian independence
C16: from Old French, from Turkish sipahi, from Persian sipāhī soldier; see sepoy
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