One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
A bandit or irregular soldier in Ireland in the 17th century.
- ‘Especially in the seventeenth and early eighteenth centuries, tories and rapparees were important, though often overlooked, figures in the history of Irish resistance to English colonisation.’
- ‘Kelly goes to the rapparee's cave to lead him into the open and within range of the soldiers' rifles.’
- ‘In 1848, an old man came to the house of William Carleton, author of Redmond Count O'Hanlon and other popular novels and short stories involving tories and rapparees.’
- ‘Hardly any local tories or rapparees are remembered in Connacht, the generally less fertile province to which the dispossessed ‘mere Irish’ were forced by Cromwell.’
- ‘Afterwards, Ned even gives them a note addressed to the other rapparees in the vicinity to guarantee their safe passage.’
From Irish rapaire ‘short pike’.
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