Meaning of Arawak in English:


Pronunciation /ˈarəwak/

nounplural noun Arawak, plural noun Arawaks

  • 1A member of a group of peoples now living mainly in Guiana, but originally from the Greater Antilles and adjacent parts of South America.

    ‘By the way, I say Arawak / Taino Indians because I was brought up reading history books which called the native Indians Arawaks.’
    • ‘Catholicism on the island dates back to the earliest presence of the Spanish conquistadors, who brought Catholic missionaries to convert native Arawaks to Christianity and train them in Spanish customs and culture.’
    • ‘Amerindian groups include the Caribs, the Arawaks, and the Warraus.’
    • ‘The islands were originally inhabited by the Arawaks, Caribs, and other Amerindians.’
    • ‘In the pre-Columbian period, Arawaks and later Caribs moved to the region from coastal South America.’
    • ‘Fewer than one hundred of the native settlers, the Arawaks, currently live in the central part of the country.’
    • ‘The earliest settlers in the Virgin Islands were the Indian tribes of the Ciboneys, the Arawaks and the Caribs.’
    • ‘Its very population is a direct result of the African slave trade, European migration, and later immigration from various parts of mostly the British empire, while little is left of the indigenous Arawaks or Caribs.’
    • ‘You will learn how the contributions of East Indians, Arawaks, Chinese, Africans and others have made Jamaican dishes so very appealing.’
    • ‘The warlike Carib people drove the Arawaks from neighboring islands but apparently did not settle on either Antigua or Barbuda.’
    • ‘The Virgin Islands were originally settled by the Ciboney, Carib, and Arawaks.’
    • ‘Intermarriage of the Arawaks and Caribs resulted in a new people called the Island Caribs.’
    • ‘The Spanish subsequently raided the islands, attacking and enslaving the Arawaks, but did not settle there.’
    • ‘The Arawaks, the first inhabitants of Jamaica, buried their dead in secluded, tranquil places not easily reached… The places where they took their dead they called Coyaba, the places of tranquillity.’
    • ‘One of these groups, the Arawaks, settled in Anguilla more or less permanently in about 2000 B.C.E.’
    • ‘The Arawaks explained the mysteries of everyday life in their myths.’
    • ‘Prior to European discovery, both Arawak and Carib Indians had been on the islands with the Caribs having possession when Columbus arrived.’
    • ‘The Carib Indians violently displaced the Arawak tribes around 1000 C.E. and called the island Camerhogne, until they also were driven out.’
    • ‘The male and female depicted on the Coat of Arms are Arawak people.’
    • ‘The Arawak called the island, Xymaca, which means ‘land of wood and water‘.’
  • 2mass noun Any of the languages of the Arawak.

    ‘They called themselves the ‘Taino'. He further suggests that their language was called Arawak.’
    • ‘Each of a dozen native groups speaks a different Carib, Arawak, or Warrau dialect.’
    • ‘There are still twenty-five surviving indigenous languages belonging to three linguistic families: Caribans, Arawak, and Chibcha.’


  • Relating to the Arawak or their languages.

    ‘In the Arawak language Carriacou means ‘Land of Reefs‘.’
    • ‘Black Carib, also known as Garifuna language, is an amalgam of an Arawak language, African vocabulary, and some English additions.’
    • ‘The word comes from the Spanish barbacoa, which in turn had probably come from a similar word in the Arawak language, denoting a structure on which meat could be dried or roasted.’
    • ‘The first settlers of this region, the Warrau Indians, arrived here before 900 AD, and were later followed by Carib and Arawak tribes’
    • ‘Before the arrival of Europeans, the region was inhabited by both Carib and Arawak tribes, who named it Guiana, which means land of many waters.’
    • ‘The Caribs plundered the Arawak villages, destroying the dwellings, securing the supplies, and killing most of the men.’
    • ‘Heritage tourists will enjoy the Carib and Arawak petroglyphs and rock carvings just north of Layou.’
    • ‘He traced the gender differences to the intermarriage of Carib men to Arawak women.’
    • ‘When Christopher Columbus arrived in Jamaica in 1494 it was inhabited by peaceful Arawak Indians.’
    • ‘Beyond is a higher limestone hill, Wareika (said to be an Arawak name), and behind that is Dallas Mountain, which takes its name from a family whose descendants emigrated to the United States and achieved great prominence.’
    • ‘On his first voyage Columbus explored various islands of the Bahamas, the north east coast of Cuba and part of the north coast of Hispaniola - La Isla Espanola - or Haiti, the Arawak name by which it is called to-day.’
    • ‘Nevertheless, his enthusiasm is undiminished, as he assists with preparations for the Arawak village, the decking and preparation of the boat; and his own part in the Landing which precedes the offerings on the beach.’
    • ‘Jamaica supplied hammocks (an Arawak invention) and cotton cloth to Cuba and Haiti, and the Spaniards themselves had sailcloth made in Jamaica.’
    • ‘Many escaped plantations and slave ships then took shelter into dark mountain jungles where Jamaica's extinct Arawak natives once inhabited.’
    • ‘The native language of the Garifuna (called Garifuna or Garinagu) comes from the Arawak and Carib languages of their island ancestors.’
    • ‘Pottery and other remnants have been found on the property which are remains of the Arawak and Carib Indians who settled here about 1500 years ago.’
    • ‘The Asháninka language belongs to the pre-Andean Arawak linguistic family.’
    • ‘She was originally from an Arawak village in South America, where she was captured as a child, taken to Barbados as a captive, and sold into slavery.’
    • ‘The English found the island uninhabited when they landed in 1625, although archaeological findings have documented prior habitation by Carib and Arawak Native Americans.’


From Carib aruac.