Definition of exclave
: a portion of a country separated from the main part and constituting an enclave in respect to the surrounding territory
exclave was our Word of the Day on 06/12/2008. Hear the podcast!
Did You Know?
You probably won't be surprised to learn that the key to "exclave" is found in "enclave." "Enclave" itself ultimately derives from the Latin word for "key," which is "clavis." It was adopted in the mid-19th century from Middle French enclaver ("to enclose"), which in turn derives (through Vulgar Latin) from in- and clavis. "Exclave" was formed about twenty years later by combining the prefix ex- and the "-clave" of "enclave." Other "clavis" descendants in English include "autoclave," "clavicle," "conclave," and "clavichord" ("an early keyboard instrument in use before the piano").
Origin and Etymology of exclave
ex- + -clave (as in enclave)
First Known Use: 1888
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