Definition of Tarascan in English:



  • 1A member of an American Indian people of a mountainous area in Michoacán, Mexico.

    • ‘Most authorities are in agreement that many Tarascans came from Perú because of similarities in their respective languages.’
    • ‘The Tlaxcalans to the east, the Tarascans on the west, and the Chichimecs in the north were outside the Aztec domain and frequently warred with them.’
    • ‘From this religious and administrative center, the Tarascans waged war against their neighbors.’
    • ‘Now a days, the Tarascans live in small villages that are not as tightly knit as they used to be.’
    • ‘The Tarascans also adopt Apache-style bows by around 1600, putting more pressure on the Aztecs.’
  • 2The language of the Tarascan.

    • ‘The P'urhépecha language, previously known as Tarascan, is a language isolate that is not even provisionally linked with any other language.’
    • ‘The language of the village is Spanish; only 156 of slightly more than 1200 inhabitants of the community speak Tarascan.’
    • ‘To be sure, this type of marking of spatial relationships in the grammatical structure by means of body part nominals does not appear to be an isolated phenomenon in Tarascan, nor to be exclusive to this language’


  • Relating to the Tarascan or their language.

    • ‘In fact, the grave goods he collected were made by a constellation of cultures that predated the Tarascan kingdom by a millennium; today, they are broadly designated West Mexican.’
    • ‘P'urhépecha was the official language of the pre-Columbian Tarascan state and became widespread in north western Mexico during the height of the Tarascan state.’
    • ‘The people of the Tarascan empire were mostly of P'urhépecha ethnic affiliation but also included other ethnic groups such as the Nahua, Otomi, Matlatzinca and Chichimec.’
    • ‘In the early years of Spanish rule, a particularly ruthless Spanish conquistador embarked on a dramatic and violent subjugation of the Tarascan empire centered near Lake Patzcuaro.’
    • ‘The elevation of the Tarascan villages varies from 5200 feet (1600 meters) above sea level to over 8200 feet (2500 meters), with Lake Pátzcuaro (Mexico's highest lake) at 7200 feet (2200 meters).’


From Spanish Tarasco (a Meso-American Indian language of Mexico) + -an.