One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
A violent, greedy, or ruthless person; a plunderer; (also more generally) a scoundrel.
Mid 16th century; earliest use found in David Lindsay (c1486–1555), writer and herald. Origin uncertain; perhaps from post-classical Latin robiator, roberator, robator, perhaps influenced in form by its cognate Italian rubatore robber. With some forms perhaps compare post-classical Latin rabiator someone who rages.
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