from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition
- n. A small three-masted Mediterranean vessel with both square and lateen sails.
from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License
- n. A small, three-masted Mediterranean transport ship
from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English
- n. A small three-masted vessel, with projecting bow stern and convex decks, used in the Mediterranean for transporting merchandise, etc. It carries large square sails, or both. Xebecs were formerly armed and used by corsairs.
from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
- n. A small three-masted vessel, formerly much used by the Algerine corsairs, and now in use to some extent in Mediterranean commerce.
French chebec, probably from Catalan xabec, from Arabic šabbāk, from šabaka, to entwine, fasten; see śbk in Semitic roots.(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
Either from French chébec, from Spanish xabeque (modern jabeque) or Catalan xabec, ultimately from Arabic شبّاك (šabbāk, "small warship, fishing boat"). (Wiktionary)