Definition of Carioca in English:



  • 1A native of Rio de Janeiro.

    • ‘You're familiar with that, you know how Orson Welles upon arriving in Rio excited the local cultured, worldly cariocas [inhabitants of Rio de Janeiro, trans].’
    • ‘Its roughly 7 million people call themselves cariocas and have an argot all their own.’
    • ‘The first of these, Missoni, has chosen a look somewhere between hippy and carioca which features a never-before-seen fake fur needlepoint fabric.’
    • ‘Many cariocas, as the residents of Rio de Janeiro are called, make a point of getting out of town long before things get started.’
    • ‘Elsewhere, athletic ‘cariocas’ (natives of Rio) play endless games of beach-volleyball, using all parts of their bodies to keep the ball from slamming into the powdery sand.’
    • ‘If I dress in casual but clean and well-maintained clothes, appropriate to the local middle class, with ‘normal’, close cropped hair, I'm hardly noticed in a carioca crowd.’
    • ‘One is a nordestino or a mineiro (native of the state of Minas Gerais) or a carioca (native of the city of Rio de Janeiro).’
    • ‘This carioca (someone born in Rio de Janeiro) guy really represents the best we have in Brazil.’
    • ‘Not that I'm comparing myself to such a grand personage, but there is in Brazilians, especially the cariocas, a great thirst for exotic phenomena which are linked to ‘outside’ mythologies.’
  • 2A Brazilian dance resembling the samba.

    • ‘Already being picked up by DJ’s with a taste for the exotic, Kuduro looks set to follow the path of Brazilian funk carioca and reggaeton, emerging from the ghettos of Angola into the dance music mainstream.’
    • ‘Repeat shuffle, then carioca, starting with your left foot this time.’


Mid 19th century: from Portuguese, from Tupi kari'oka ‘house of the white man’.