One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
1A light rowboat used on the Bosporus.
- ‘The lighter service was handled, at least in part, by caiques and other mostly locally owned small boats whose socio-economic leverage, unlike that of the elite property owners on the sea front, was not great.’
- ‘Would you like to experience Istanbul from a caique?’
- ‘We sent up our luggage and servants by a caique, a long, narrow, flat-bottomed boat, rowed by sculls.’
- ‘We enter a caique, where we take our seals in oriental fashion, and two rowers, dressed in grey-white, striped silk shirts and red fezzes, sped us up the Bosporus.’
2A small eastern Mediterranean sailing ship.
- ‘Typically, 12 to 20 rounds were needed to destroy a caique or schooner.’
- ‘In fact only a small convoy of caiques, bearing a single battalion of mountain troops, was headed for Maleme, not Canea.’
- ‘Formerly known as caiques, gulets are beautiful, broad-beamed, hand-built wooden sailing boats, but unfortunately these days the sails are strictly for show.’
Early 17th century: from French caïque, from Italian caicco, from Turkish kayık.
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