One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
A member of a society or cult of professional robbers and murderers who strangled their victims.
Early 19th century; earliest use found in John Forbes (1787–1861), physician and medical journalist. From Urdu phãsīgar strangler from phãsī noose (from Sanskrit pāśikā, diminutive of pāśa) + Persion -gār, -gar agent suffix.
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