Definitions

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

  • n. A rich watered silk.
  • n. A fabric of plain weave.
  • n. A domestic cat with a striped or brindled coat of a gray or tawny color.
  • n. A domestic cat, especially a female.
  • n. A spinster.
  • n. A prying woman; a gossip.
  • n. South Atlantic U.S. A mixture of oyster shells, lime, sand, and water used as a building material.
  • adj. Having light and dark striped markings: a tabby cat.
  • adj. Made of or resembling watered silk.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. A kind of waved silk, usually called watered silk, manufactured like taffeta, but thicker and stronger. The watering is given to it by calendering.
  • n. A mixture of lime with shells, gravel, or stones, in equal proportions, with an equal proportion of water. When dry, this becomes as hard as rock.
  • n. A brindled cat
  • n. An old maid or gossip.
  • adj. Having a wavy or watered appearance; as, a tabby waistcoat.
  • adj. Brindled; diversified in color; as, a tabby cat.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • adj. Having a wavy or watered appearance.
  • adj. Brindled; diversified in color.
  • n. A kind of waved silk, usually called watered silk, manufactured like taffeta, but thicker and stronger. The watering is given to it by calendering.
  • n. A mixture of lime with shells, gravel, or stones, in equal proportions, with an equal proportion of water. When dry, this becomes as hard as rock.
  • n. A brindled cat; hence, popularly, any cat.
  • n. An old maid or gossip.
  • transitive v. To water; to cause to look wavy, by the process of calendering; to calender

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. A watered material.
  • n. A worsted material, as a watered moreen.
  • n. In the fifteenth and sixteenth centuries, a silken stuff not necessarily watered.
  • n. In entomology, a pyralid moth of the genus Aglossa: a British collectors' name. A. pinguinalis is the common tabby, also called grease-moth; A. cuprealis is the small tabby.
  • Made of or resembling the fabric tabby; diversified in appearance or color like tabby.
  • Performed as in making the plain material from which tabby is produced: said of weaving.
  • To cause to look like tabby, or watered silk; give a wavy appearance to, as stuffs: as, to tabby silk, mohair, ribbon, etc. This is done by the use of a calender without water.
  • n. A tabby-cat.
  • n. A female cat: distinguished from tom-cat
  • n. An old maid; a spinster; hence, any spiteful female gossip or tattler.
  • n. A mixture of lime with shells, gravel, or stones in equal proportions, with an equal proportion of water, forming a mass which when dry becomes as hard as rock. This is used in Morocco as a substitute for bricks or stone in building.

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

  • n. a cat with a grey or tawny coat mottled with black
  • n. female cat
  • adj. having a grey or brown streak or a pattern or a patchy coloring; used especially of the patterned fur of cats

Etymologies

French tabis, from Old French atabis, from Medieval Latin attabī, from Arabic 'attābī, after al-'Attābīya, a suburb of Baghdad, Iraq.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
Mid 17th c. French atabis < Arabic attabi < ult. from Arabic al-Attabiya, the name of a section of Baghdad, Iraq, which is associated with the manufacture of a certain type of waved silk; see also taffeta, another type of silk whose name derives from the Persian taftah "woven cloth" and shares a similar etymological origin. (Wiktionary)

Examples

Wordnik is becoming a not-for-profit! Read our announcement here.

Comments

Log in or sign up to get involved in the conversation. It's quick and easy.