raree show



a carnival or street show; spectacle.

Origin of raree show

First recorded in 1695–1705; allegedly imitative of a foreign pronunciation of rare show
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for raree show

Historical Examples of raree show

  • The boys will care for this raree-show more than thou or I, Tib!

    The Armourer's Prentices

    Charlotte M. Yonge

  • He twists and doubles himself as if he had a raree-show at his back.

    The Heiress;

    John Burgoyne

  • Be gar no raree-show for you, monsieur Alscrip, if I can help.

    The Heiress;

    John Burgoyne

  • My name is Jack Capstone of Deptford, and are not you the man that has the raree-show of oyster-shells and pebble-stones?

  • I would pay due attention to the crowd by and by, and gratify it perhaps more than by the raree-show it was gaping to see.

British Dictionary definitions for raree show

raree show


a street show or carnival
another name for peepshow

Word Origin for raree show

C17: raree from rare 1
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 raree show

"peep show contained in a box," 1680s, so called "in imitation of the foreign way of pronouncing rare show" [Johnson]. "Johnson's statement is prob. correct; the early exhibitors of peep-shows appear to have been usually Savoyards, from whom the form was no doubt adopted" [OED]. Early "peep shows" were more innocent than what usually was meant later by that word.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper