an East Indian sailor.
Indian English. an artilleryman.

Also lashkar.

Origin of lascar

1615–25; < Portuguese, short for lasquarin soldier < Urdu lashkarī < Persian, equivalent to lashkar army + suffix of appurtenance Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for lascar

Historical Examples of lascar

  • That is only a Lascar, one of the sailors, a picturesque fellow, isn't he?

  • Grief and rage convulsed the fierce face of the wounded Lascar.

    The Haunters of the Silences

    Charles G. D. Roberts

  • A Lascar sailor, who was living with the savages, acted as interpreter.

    The Long White Cloud

    William Pember Reeves

  • He has crept out of the Lascar's attic, and he saw the light.

    A Little Princess

    Frances Hodgson Burnett

  • Here is a Lascar ashore from the big steamer that is to start for Alexandria on the morrow.


    William Black

British Dictionary definitions for lascar



a sailor from the East Indies

Word Origin for lascar

C17: from Urdu lashkar soldier, from Persian: the army
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 lascar

East Indian sailor, 1620s, from Portuguese lachar, from Hindi lashkari "soldier, native sailor," from lashkar "army, camp," from Persian lashkar. Cf. Arabic al-'askar "the army," perhaps from Persian.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper