Celebes

[ sel-uh-beez, suh-lee-beez; Dutch se-ley-bes ]
/ ˈsɛl əˌbiz, səˈli biz; Dutch sɛˈleɪ bɛs /
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noun

former name of Sulawesi.

Related formsCel·e·be·sian [sel-uh-bee-zhuh n] /ˌsɛl əˈbi ʒən/, adjective

Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

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British Dictionary definitions for celebes

Celebes

/ (ˈsɛlɪbiːz, sɛˈliːbɪz) /

noun

the English name for Sulawesi
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

Word Origin and History for celebes

Celebes

old name for modern Sulawesi (which itself might be a native corruption of Celebes) in Indonesia, first used by Portuguese, 1512, perhaps from Os Célebres "the famous ones," a name given by navigators to the dangerous capes on the island's northeast coast.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper