Dictionary: A   B   C   D   E   F   G   H   I   J   K   L   M   N   O   P   Q   R   S   T   U   V   W   X   Y   Z


[kaf-er, kah-fer] /ˈkæf ər, ˈkɑ fər/

noun, plural Kaffirs (especially collectively) Kaffir.
Disparaging and Offensive. (in South Africa) a contemptuous term used to refer to a black person: originally used of the Xhosa people only.
(lowercase) (def 4).
(lowercase) Islam. (def 2).
noun (pl) -firs, -fir
(taboo) (in southern Africa) any Black African
(offensive) (among Muslims) a non-Muslim or infidel

1790, from Arabic kafir “unbeliever, infidel, impious wretch,” with a literal sense of “one who does not admit the blessings of God,” from kafara “to cover up, conceal, deny, blot out.” Technically, “non-Muslim,” but in Ottoman times it came to be used almost exclusively for “Christian.” Early English missionaries used it as an equivalent of “heathen” to refer to Bantus in South Africa (1792), from which use it came generally to mean “South African black” regardless of ethnicity, and to be a term of abuse since at least 1934.


Read Also:

  • Kaffir beer

    noun 1. (South African) a former, taboo name for sorghum beer

  • Kaffirboom

    /ˈkæfəˌbʊəm/ noun 1. (South African) a former, taboo name for Erythrina caffra, now known as coral tree

  • Kaffir corn

    noun 1. an old-fashioned and now taboo name for a Southern African variety of sorghum, cultivated in dry regions for its grain and as fodder Sometimes shortened to kaffir, (US) kafir

  • Kaffir-lily

    noun 1. . 2. .

Disclaimer: Kaffir definition / meaning should not be considered complete, up to date, and is not intended to be used in place of a visit, consultation, or advice of a legal, medical, or any other professional. All content on this website is for informational purposes only.