Definitions

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

  • n. A houseboat having sails and sometimes an engine, used on the Nile.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. A Nile boat constructed on the model of a floating house, with large sails.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. A Nile boat constructed on the model of a floating house, having large lateen sails.

Etymologies

Arabic ḏahabīya, the Golden One, name of the gilded barge of the Muslim rulers of Egypt, from ḏahabīy, golden, from ḏahab, gold; see ḏhb in Semitic roots.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
Arabic (Wiktionary)

Examples

  • On December 10, the Adamses set out on their chartered boat, the Isis, a modern version of an ancient shallow-water craft known as a dahabeah.

    The Five of Hearts

  • Gleyre's best-known picture is the painting in the Louvre, somewhat weak in colouring, but showing much feeling, a Nile subject representing a man sitting on the banks of the river and watching the dreams of his youth, represented as beautiful women, fleeing from him on a decorated dahabeah, which is disappearing.

    Recollections Of My Childhood And Youth

  • It was in the middle of January, after a pleasant journey up the Nile from Lower Egypt, on board a luxuriously fitted up "dahabeah," that I arrived at Korosko, a Nubian village about a thousand miles from the

    Brave Men and Women Their Struggles, Failures, And Triumphs

  • For four weeks the steam-powered dahabeah chuffed along the green river, stopping to let the travelers stroll among sunbaked ruins or make dusty forays to distant temples arid tombs.

    The Five of Hearts

  • As Gordon and his troops (200 Egyptian soldiers) sailed up the Nile in their _dahabeah_, the boat was often blocked by the tangled water weeds.

    The Story of General Gordon

  • On landing at Alexandria, we were hurried on board a large mast-less canal boat, shaped like a Nile dahabeah.

    Forty-one years in India From Subaltern To Commander-In-Chief

  • Yet, if you have just come from Egypt and three months on a dahabeah, you will not hesitate to call this luxurious mode of passing from Dan to Beersheba "roughing it in Palestine."

    Lippincott's Magazine, October 1885

  • He saw the dahabeah slowly making its way up the winding river, the flat banks on either side, the palm trees in silhouetted clusters against the sunset, the shattered cornice of the ruins he was to explore just coming into view.

    Galusha the Magnificent

  • He was just under thirty years, as good-looking as most men, with no one dependent upon him and an income that had withstood both the Maison Doree and a dahabeah on the Nile.

    Graustark

  • This was remarked by occasional inspectors making their official rounds, and by more than one khowagah putting in with his dahabeah where the village maidens came to fill their water-jars.

    Donovan Pasha, and Some People of Egypt — Volume 1

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  • "A dahabeah, also spelled dahabeeyah, dahabiah, dahabiya, dahabiyah and dhahabiyya (Arabic ذهبىة /ðahabīya/), is a passenger boat used on the River Nile in Egypt. The term is normally used to describe a shallow-bottomed, barge-like vessel with two or more sails. The vessels have been around in one form or another for thousands of years, with similar craft being depicted on the walls of the tombs of Egyptian Pharaohs. Indeed, the name derives from the Arabic word for "gold", owing to similar, gilded state barges used by the Muslim rulers of Egypt in the Middle Ages."
    - Wikipedia.

    September 24, 2011