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Historical Examples

carrer did well in the limit which he assigned himself, but his range was circumscribed.
Modern Italian Poets William Dean Howells


Also called motorcar, automobile. a self-propelled road vehicle designed to carry passengers, esp one with four wheels that is powered by an internal-combustion engine
(as modifier): car coat

a conveyance for passengers, freight, etc, such as a cable car or the carrier of an airship or balloon
(Brit) a railway vehicle for passengers only, such as a sleeping car or buffet car
(mainly US & Canadian) a railway carriage or van
(mainly US) the enclosed platform of a lift
a poetic word for chariot
compound annual return

c.1300, “wheeled vehicle,” from Anglo-French carre, Old North French carre, from Vulgar Latin *carra, related to Latin carrum, carrus (plural carra), originally “two-wheeled Celtic war chariot,” from Gaulish karros, a Celtic word (cf. Old Irish and Welsh carr “cart, wagon,” Breton karr “chariot”), from PIE *krsos, from root *kers- “to run” (see current (adj.)).

“From 16th to 19th c. chiefly poetic, with associations of dignity, solemnity, or splendour …” [OED]. Used in U.S. of railway carriages by 1826; extension to “automobile” is by 1896. Car bomb first 1972, in reference to Northern Ireland. The Latin word also is the source of Italian and Spanish carro, French char.


A group of prisoners from the same city or other place; locational clique: All these kids were in the Sacramento car (1980s+ Prison)

Related Terms

funny car, prowl car
Carina (constellation)
Carolina Panthers
computer-assisted retrieval


Read Also:

  • Carroll

    Charles, 1737–1832, American patriot and legislator. Lewis, pen name of Charles Lutwidge Dodgson. Also, Carrol. a male or female given name. Contemporary Examples Carroll talks to me over the sound of an organ projecting from a Yamaha keyboard. This Civil War Reenactor Controls Christie’s Fate Olivia Nuzzi March 4, 2014 Carroll was kinder, shrugging that […]

  • Car-seat

    a removable seat designed to hold a small child safely while riding in an automobile and that usually attaches to a standard seat with hooks or straps. a removable cushion or pad for a driver or passenger to sit on while traveling by automobile, to give extra height or comfort. Historical Examples Kenneth had lighted […]

  • Carsick

    ill with carsickness. adjective nauseated from riding in a car or other vehicle adj. also car-sick, 1908, on model of seasick, from car (n.) + sick (adj.). Related: Carsickness. carsick car·sick (kär’sĭk’) adj. Suffering from motion sickness caused by travel in a motor vehicle.

  • Carsickness

    a feeling of nausea and dizziness, sometimes accompanied by vomiting, as a result of the motion of the car in which one is traveling. Contemporary Examples She took the wheel, and drove until Jamie began complaining of carsickness. The Scott Sisters’ Life Sentence for $11 Constantino Diaz-Duran December 30, 2010 carsickness car·sick·ness (kär’sĭk’nĭs) n. A […]

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