- a strong, robust fellow, especially a strong manual laborer.
- a miser; an extremely thrifty person.
Archaic. a churl.
Obsolete. a bondman.
Origin of carl
before 1000Related formscarl·ish, adjectivecarl·ish·ness, noun
(in compounds; see housecarl
); Middle English; Old English -carl
< Old Norse karl
man; cognate with Old High German karl;
akin to churl
Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019
British Dictionary definitions for carlish
archaic another word for churl
Word Origin for carl
Old English, from Old Norse karl
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
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Word Origin and History for carlish
c.1300, "bondsman; common man, man of low birth," from Old Norse karl "man, male, freeman," from Proto-Germanic *karlon-, the same root that produced Old English ceorl "man of low degree" (see churl).
The Mellere was a stout carle for the nones [Chaucer]
masc. proper name, from Middle High German Karl "man, husband" (see carl).
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper