Definition of Abyssinian in English:



  • Relating to Abyssinia or its people.

    • ‘Born of an Arab father and an Abyssinian mother, he became early in life the champion warrior and poet of his tribe - the Bani ‘Abs.’
    • ‘Those ancient Greek athletes were running on something special then, ground-up hooves of Abyssinian asses.’
    • ‘By August 1940 there were more than 92,000 Italian and 250,000 Abyssinian troops under arms; the British had only 40,000, nearly all of whom had been raised locally.’
    • ‘The specimens include the Abyssinian banana plant from Italy, which is one of the oldest cultivated plants, and the Screwpine - which is native to Madagascar and has in the past been used for weaving and even hut roofs.’
    • ‘When the battle ended, the Abyssinian emperor committed suicide.’
    • ‘The myth also is rich with the flavor of Abyssinian culture: the sending of pleasing gifts to beg an invitation, Solomon's craftiness, and Menelik's transferring the power of the Ark to his own land.’
    • ‘It was particularly significant that Milanese business interests, which had been hostile to Crispi's Abyssinian venture during the 1890s, now backed colonial expansion.’
    • ‘He invites me to join in and, yes, it's true that Kenyan coffee has a citrus, almost lemony taste, while the Abyssinian coffee is dark, full-blooded and winey, and Javan tastes of good plain chocolate.’
    • ‘In this production, the troopship is just back in Messina from the Abyssinian campaign of 1936.’
    • ‘The corms of these African natives, which the Dutch sometimes call Abyssinian gladioli, should be planted after the last threat of frost is gone.’
    • ‘Although not technically imperial policing, the most extreme example of aerial activity against a non-western power came in the Italian - Abyssinian war of 1935-6.’
    • ‘I went up to hear Calvin Butts preach at the Abyssinian Baptist Church.’
    • ‘Had an Abyssinian slave been in your place, she would have done as much as you!’
    • ‘Because Bredin knows the signs in the territory the chapters dealing with the Abyssinian adventures are first-rate and as gripping as Bruce's original account.’
    • ‘Piggy the guinea pig… okay, a fancy tricolour Abyssinian guinea pig with splendid tufts of hair, but ultimately a rodent from the pet shop.’
    • ‘A minority of Ethiopian immigrants managed to open successful restaurants that feature Abyssinian cuisine.’
    • ‘As I wondered through the great royal halls of the old Abyssinian capital of Gondar, I thought of love.’
    • ‘The Quraish (the leading tribe of Makkah) sent two emissaries to make a plea before the Abyssinian king, the Negus, to return the refugees back to Quraish.’
    • ‘It was made of Abyssinian steel, and was three cubits long with a weighty bulge at one end.’
    • ‘The Americans, oddly, took the Abyssinian war more seriously than we did.’


  • 1historical A native of Abyssinia.

    • ‘The Abyssinian and the Arab, the Persian and the Indian, the Turk and the Albanian have very freely intermarried.’
    • ‘And I was around the hospital at the time, so I am one of the few, probably the only living witness now, to know that Mussolini used mustard gas, or what was called yperite in those days, against the Abyssinians.’
    • ‘Fertile soils allow rich harvests for the large populations of Abyssinians, who live in a fairly complex political system.’
    • ‘‘It was the Mighty Diamonds, the Abyssinians, and Bob Marley,’ he says.’
    • ‘Above all, they have largely succeeded in their avowed aim, from Mussolini's bombing of the Abyssinians and the killing of all men in the town of Lidice in reprisal for the killing of one man, down to the ‘Christmas bombing’ of Hanoi in 1972.’
    • ‘It cost about £4 a word, and at one stage, the Abyssinians limited us to 100 words a day.’
    • ‘He also instructed his followers to ‘leave the Abyssinians in peace’, an injunction which goes a long way to explaining how the Christian faith of Abyssinia has been preserved today.’
    • ‘Gow highlights how the Oromo in exile are faced with the familiar processes of debasement and humiliation of their identity by the Abyssinians - the ruling people of Ethiopia - even in exile.’
    • ‘In AD 569 an army of Christian Abyssinians besieged Mecca, but was defeated by a mysterious plague that sounds very like smallpox.’
    • ‘Diligent and uncompromising in their stand on religion, justice and righteousness, the Abyssinians have fostered their message and nurtured their sound to diamond precision - outlasting many a cultural phenom that has followed.’
    • ‘But the kingdom wasn't as exciting as the one in the letter, because those poor Abyssinians were completely impoverished.’
    • ‘The Italians had attempted to expand in eastern Africa by joining Abyssinia to her conquests, but in 1896, the Italians were heavily defeated by the Abyssinians at the Battle of Adowa.’
  • 2A cat of a breed having long ears and short brown hair flecked with grey.

    • ‘Breeders will be allowed to breed ocicats to Abyssinians until 2005.’
    • ‘Even though he hadn't been born there, his mother, a shorthaired Abyssinian, was living there, having just been acquired by Mague from someone who had given up breeding.’
    • ‘Has two Pomeranian dogs, Gizmo and P.J., and two Abyssinian cats, Cookie and Biscuit’
    • ‘Cats in general and at least two breeds in particular - the Egyptian mau and the Abyssinian - are said to have descended from wild cats first domesticated by the Egyptians roughly 4,000 years ago, give or take a few dynasties.’
    • ‘If I did have a favourite it'd probably be my Abyssinian male.’
    • ‘Some cat registries describe the Abyssinian as a medium-sized cat, while others describe it as a medium to large one.’
    • ‘On top of the tooth-ache I'm house- and cat-sitting for my folks for a couple of days and their two Abyssinian kittens, while lovely and absolutely gorgeous, are a handful and very active - going wild every 30 mins or so.’
    • ‘I think I may get a sorrel Abyssinian at the end of August; but I have also been negotiating about a smoke egyptian mau, and this has been very trying.’
    • ‘They are also very expensive, which is merely unfortunate since, like intaglios and Abyssinian cats, they are infinitely desirable.’
    • ‘‘No… no… I want an Abyssinian,’ Alyssa said, her mind made up.’
    • ‘Breed standards permit any color except the Siamese pattern or Abyssinian type agouti.’
    • ‘The office I work in is also home to two Abyssinian cats.’
    • ‘This kitten and others like her, in turn, produced dyspepsia in most Abyssinian breeders when longhaired Abys began turning up in experimental classes at shows.’
    • ‘Miss Cat is patrolling; Abyssinians, having natural frown lines, tend to look a bit worried but she looks more worried than usual.’
    • ‘Meg starts sleeping on the couch with the couple's Abyssinian cats, Belle and Mulan.’
    • ‘She always remained attached to her Scottish roots and on retiring spent her summers pottering in her cottage in the north of Scotland, with her Abyssinian cats.’
    • ‘I ran into a breeder who had just had a litter of blue Abyssinians.’
    • ‘They have two young Abyssinian cats who are slightly deranged.’
    • ‘She settled on Burmese and Abyssinians but has bred everything from Somalis to Tonkanese.’