a sport resembling boxing but permitting blows to be delivered with the feet as well as the hands.

Origin of savate

1860–65; < French: literally, old shoe. See sabot Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for savate

Historical Examples of savate

  • Max had not expected the savate from an Englishman, and he was very glad of the warning.

    A Soldier of the Legion

    C. N. Williamson

  • Savate, boxing and kicking; canne, cane (fencing expression).

  • “I have some acquaintance with the savate,” he said suavely.

  • Then his right foot rose, in the famous and deadly blow of the savate.

    The Blue Lights

    Arnold Fredericks

  • It was with the Revolution that the rapier went out, and the savate came in.

    Sword and Gown

    George A. Lawrence

British Dictionary definitions for savate



a form of boxing in which blows may be delivered with the feet as well as the hands

Word Origin for savate

C19: from French, literally: old worn-out shoe; related to sabot
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 savate

French method of fighting with the feet, 1862, from French savate, literally "a kind of shoe" (see sabotage).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper