Berber

noun

Ber·​ber ˈbər-bər How to pronounce Berber (audio)
1
: a member of any of various peoples living in northern Africa west of Tripoli
2
a
: a branch of the Afro-Asiatic language family comprising languages spoken by various peoples of northern Africa and the Sahara (such as the Tuaregs and the Kabyles)
b
: any one of the Berber languages

Examples of Berber in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Morocco Morocco now honors Berber New Year with an official holiday. Erika Page, The Christian Science Monitor, 12 June 2023 Spain’s colonial Army was reduced to chasing Berber guerrillas around Morocco. Jon Lee Anderson, The New Yorker, 8 Jan. 2024 The village of Shali, Siwa’s fortified historic center, dates to the 13th century, when its inhabitants, many of Berber origin, built a settlement out of kershef, a light-colored composite of sand and salt abundant in the region. Gisela Williams Anthony Cotsifas, New York Times, 6 Sep. 2023 Plus, the plush wool Berber carpet is a soft landing spot for bare feet. Katherine Owen, Southern Living, 2 Aug. 2023 Morocco now honors Berber New Year with an official holiday. Erika Page, The Christian Science Monitor, 12 June 2023

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'Berber.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

Etymology

ultimately from Arabic barbar

First Known Use

1732, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of Berber was in 1732

Dictionary Entries Near Berber

Cite this Entry

“Berber.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/Berber. Accessed 26 May. 2024.

Kids Definition

Berber

noun
Ber·​ber ˈbər-bər How to pronounce Berber (audio)
1
: a member of a people of northwestern Africa
2
: any of a group of languages spoken in northwestern Africa

More from Merriam-Webster on Berber

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