Mameluke

[mam-uh-look]
noun
  1. a member of a military class, originally composed of slaves, that seized control of the Egyptian sultanate in 1250, ruled until 1517, and remained powerful until massacred or dispersed by Mehemet Ali in 1811.
  2. (lowercase) (in Muslim countries) a slave.

Origin of Mameluke

1505–15; < Arabic mamlūk literally, slave, noun use of past participle of malaka to possess
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British Dictionary definitions for mameluke

Mameluke

Mamaluke Mamluk (ˈmæmluːk)

noun
  1. a member of a military class, originally of Turkish slaves, ruling in Egypt from about 1250 to 1517 and remaining powerful until crushed in 1811
  2. (in Muslim countries) a slave

Word Origin for Mameluke

C16: via French, ultimately from Arabic mamlūk slave, from malaka to possess
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 mameluke

Mameluke

Egyptian dynasty 1254-1517, originally a military unit comprised of Caucasian slaves, from Middle French mameluk and directly from Arabic mamluk "purchased slave," literally "possessed," from past participle of malaka "he possessed" (cf. Arabic malik, Hebrew melekh "king").

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper