One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
1A Greek independence fighter, especially one who fought the Turks in the 15th century or during the war of independence (1821–8).
2historical A Greek brigand or bandit.
From modern Greek klephtēs, from Greek kleptēs ‘thief’. The original klephts led an outlaw existence in the mountains; those who maintained this after the war of independence became bandits.
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