Quantcast
Merriam-Webster Logo
  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
  • Medical
  • Scrabble
  • Spanish Central
  • Learner's Dictionary

barbarian

play
adjective bar·bar·i·an \bär-ˈber-ē-ən\

Definition of barbarian

  1. 1 :  of or relating to a land, culture, or people alien and usually believed to be inferior to another land, culture, or people

  2. 2 :  lacking refinement, learning, or artistic or literary culture

barbarian noun
bar·bar·i·an·ism play \-ē-ə-ˌni-zəm\ noun


Examples of barbarian

  1. <people who were regarded as barbarian by the ancient Romans>



Origin of barbarian

Latin barbarus — more at barbarous


First Known Use: 14th century



Seen and Heard

What made you want to look up barbarian? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).

WORD OF THE DAY

February 6, 2016

an official order, decree, or edict

Get Word of the Day daily email!

WORD GAMES

Take a 3-minute break and test your skills!

image1037863653

Which of the following refers to thin, bending ice, or to the act of running over such ice?

duvet kittly-benders pince-nez spindrift
Name That Thing

10 quick questions: hear them, spell them, and see how your skills compare to the crowd.

TAKE THE QUIZ
SCRABBLE® Sprint

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ