• synonyms


[kam-uh-ril-uh; Spanish kah-mah-ree-lyah, -ree-yah]
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noun, plural cam·a·ril·las [kam-uh-ril-uh z; Spanish kah-mah-ree-lyahs, -ree-yahs] /ˌkæm əˈrɪl əz; Spanish ˌkɑ mɑˈri lyɑs, -ˈri yɑs/.
  1. a group of unofficial or private advisers to a person of authority, especially a group much given to intrigues and secret plots; cabal; clique.
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Origin of camarilla

1830–40; < Spanish, equivalent to camar(a) room (< Latin camera; see chamber) + -illa diminutive suffix < Latin
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for camarilla

Historical Examples

  • Such were the methods of the camarilla who were ruling Russia!

    The Minister of Evil

    William Le Queux

  • Their creatures have worked their way into the cabinet and the camarilla.

  • In either case the sovereignty of Ireland relapses into the hands of the permanent officials, that camarilla of Olympians.

  • Camarilla, kam-ar-il′a, n. a body of secret intriguers, esp.

  • But how can we shake off this Camarilla that shelters itself behind a forest of bayonets?


    E. V. Zenker

British Dictionary definitions for camarilla


  1. a group of confidential advisers, esp formerly, to the Spanish kings; cabal
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Word Origin

C19: from Spanish: literally: a little room
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