Definition of boubou in English:



  • 1

    (also boubou shrike)
    An African bush shrike (songbird) with the upper parts mainly blackish in color. It is noted for the duet of bell-like calls produced by the male and female together.
    Compare with brubru

    Genus Laniarius, family Laniidae: several species, in particular the tropical boubou (L. aethiopicus) and the southern boubou (L. ferrugineus)

    ‘The heavy air vibrates with cooing of doves and the creaking-gate single note of the tropical boubou.’
    • ‘The best-known and best-studied duettists are certain African shrikes, notably the tropical boubou shrike Laniarius aethiopicus.’
  • 2A long, colorful, loose-fitting garment worn by both sexes in parts of Africa.

    ‘Guineans have made an art form of boubous, garments which they slip over their heads and wear over matching pants.’
    • ‘In more traditional settings, people wear boubous, loose-fitting cotton tunics with large openings under the arms.’
    • ‘It consists of draw-string trousers, a long-sleeved loose-fitting shirt with an open neck, and a boubou (long, full robe).’
    • ‘Gardi has successfully proven that ‘a boubou is much more than a simple garment, it is a whole style’.’
    • ‘On their US tour they'd wear boubous, traditional Senegalese dress.’
    • ‘Then of course there were a lot of the Americans who, whenever I would dress in African clothing - a kaftan, or chayas, or a boubou - would tease me.’
    • ‘To emphasize the wide range and variety of these garments, Gardi also illustrates boubous from the Guinea Coast, Fulani and Wodaabe boubous from Mali and Niger, and Bamana shirts embroidered by ‘Ghana Boys.’’
    • ‘The Cameroon Grasslands represent a cultural transition between west and central Africa, and the early use of boubous there is thought to result from a Hausa and Yoruba influence.’
    • ‘Traditional dress varies for men is the boubou (an ample, full-length tunic).’
    • ‘The image he himself cultivated during his presidency, and which appears in official portraits and on Malian currency of the period, always shows him wearing a Malian kaftan, or boubou.’
    • ‘These range from classic styles to boubous inspired by the African Diaspora, such as ‘Grand Dakar’ or ‘Washington.’’
    • ‘The west African embroidered boubou is becoming popular with both men and women.’
    • ‘He stresses the need for a wider view of west African boubou styles and their interrelationships.’
    • ‘For example, in highlighting Diula and Senufo boubous that have woven as opposed to embroidered motifs, he includes a photograph of the master weaver Fettege Daanyogo beside one of his boubous.’
    • ‘Ceremonial occasions call for elaborate boubous.’
    • ‘Both men's and women's boubous are open at the side, both for style and to allow air circulation in hot and humid climates.’
    • ‘Back in Dakar, though, off came the boubous and on came the Nikes.’
    • ‘For formal occasions men and women may wear the grand boubou.’
    • ‘Depending on the purpose of the boubou, it may be elaborately embroidered and could cost two to three hundred dollars.’
    • ‘The catalogue includes information on the contributors, a bibliography, and a list of the seventeen lomasa boubous and the twenty-three mandingo boubous in museum collections.’



/ˈbo͞obo͞o/ /ˈbubu/


French boubou (sense 1) probably imitative of its call; boubou (sense 2) from Malinke bubu.