from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. Any bean, but especially the hyacinth bean (Lablab purpureus).
  • n. Food made from beans.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. In the West Indies, a name for several species of beans belonging to the genus Dolichos, especially D. sphærospermus.


from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

A corruption of garbanzo.


  • The word garbanzo came to English as "calavance" in the 17th century, from Old Spanish

    Find Me A Cure

  • It is the custom on board slavers, I believe -- at least it was so on board the _Francesca_ -- to feed the slaves twice a day, the food consisting of a fairly liberal quantity of boiled rice, farina, or calavance beans -- these latter being used on account of their great fattening powers, whereby the slaves are maintained in a tolerably good condition of body -- with a pint of water at each meal.

    The Pirate Slaver A Story of the West African Coast


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