Word Origin any very wealthy, influential, or powerful person. Also nawab. a person, especially a European, who has made a large fortune in India or another country of the East. nawab. (def 1) Origin of nabob
dating back to
nawab Related forms na·bob·er·y , [ ney-bob- uh-ree, ney- bob- uh-ree] /ˈneɪ bɒb ə ri, neɪˈbɒb ə ri/ na·bob·ism, noun na·bob·ish, na·bob·i·cal, adjective na·bob·ish·ly, na·bob·i·cal·ly, adverb na·bob·ship, noun
Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018
British Dictionary definitions for nabobism informal a rich, powerful, or important man (formerly) a European who made a fortune in the Orient, esp in India another name for a nawab Derived Forms nabobery ( ˈneɪbɒbərɪ, neɪˈbɒbərɪ) or nabobism, noun nabobish, adjective Word Origin for nabob
C17: from Portuguese
nababo, from Hindi nawwāb; see nawab
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
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Word Origin and History for nabobism n.
1610s, "deputy governor in Mogul Empire," Anglo-Indian, from Hindi
nabab, from Arabic nuwwab, honorific plural of na'ib "viceroy, deputy," from base n-w-b "to take someone's place." Also used of Europeans who came home from India having made a fortune there, hence "very rich man" (1764).
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper