Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. A market consisting of a street lined with shops and stalls, especially one in the Middle East.
  • n. A shop or a part of a store in which miscellaneous articles are sold.
  • n. A fair or sale at which miscellaneous articles are sold, often for charitable purposes.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. A marketplace, particularly in the Middle East, and often covered with shops and stalls.
  • n. A shop selling articles that are either exotic or eclectic.
  • n. A fair or temporary market, often for charity.
  • n. Common misspelling of bizarre.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. In the East, an exchange, marketplace, or assemblage of shops where goods are exposed for sale.
  • n. A spacious hall or suite of rooms for the sale of goods, as at a fair.
  • n. A fair for the sale of fancy wares, toys, etc., commonly for a charitable purpose.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. In the East, an exchange, market-place, or place where goods are exposed for sale, consisting either of small shops or stalls in a narrow street or series of streets, or of a certain section in a town under one roof and divided by narrower passageways, in which all or most of the merchants and artisans in a certain material or metal, or any single class of goods, are gathered both for manufacture and traffic.
  • n. A sale of miscellaneous articles in furtherance of some charitable or other purpose; a fancy fair. The articles there sold are mostly of fancy work, and contributed gratuitously.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • n. a street of small shops (especially in Orient)
  • n. a shop where a variety of goods are sold
  • n. a sale of miscellany; often for charity

Etymologies

Italian bazarro and Urdu bāzār, both from Persian.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
Italian bazarra, from Persian بازار (bâzâr) 'market', from Middle Persian 𐭥𐭠𐭰𐭠𐭥 (vāčāṙ) (compare Old Armenian վաճառ (vačaṙ)), from Old Persian vahā-čarana ("market-walkabout"), compound of Proto-Indo-European *wesā- 'to buy' and *kʷéle/o 'to turn'. More at vend and wheel. (Wiktionary)

Examples

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  • I'm reminded of a grade-school classmate who, when tasked with making a poster for the church bazaar, made a delightfully artistic and well-lettered one for a local grocery store that said "Church Bizarre." I thought for sure they wouldn't use it, but they did.

    May 18, 2010

  • A flock of guillemots

    November 16, 2007