Definition of koumiss in English:


(also kumis, kumiss)


  • [mass noun] A fermented liquor prepared from mare's milk, used as a drink and medicine by Asian nomads.

    • ‘In Kyrgyzstan, however, where one is never far from koumiss - the national brew of fermented mare's milk that is slightly alcoholic and often searingly sour - it's as well to cultivate a taste.’
    • ‘A fermented horse's milk called kumis in Kazakh is also occasionally drunk at ceremonial occasions.’
    • ‘Australia's Parliamentary Secretary for Foreign Affairs, Chris Gallus, is heading out from the capital, Ulaanbaatar, to see a farming family and sample the traditional Mongolian drink, koumiss or fermented mare's milk.’
    • ‘Anyhow, it was decided to use the Kyrgyz word nearest in sound, which is bishkek, meaning ‘whisk to stir kumiss with’.’
    • ‘The alcoholic content, if any, of root beer is so small that it could be and was recommended by the temperance movement in America, and easily qualifies for inclusion in this book, along with kvass and koumiss and the like.’
    • ‘Examples of traditional Kyrgyz food include manti (mutton dumplings), irikat (a type of pasta salad made with noodles, carrots, and radishes), and koumiss (fermented mare's milk).’
    • ‘Some scientists think that yoghurt's predecessor was a fermented milk drink called ‘kumis’.’


Late 16th century: based on Tatar kumiz.