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barbacane

English translation: barbican

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GLOSSARY ENTRY (DERIVED FROM QUESTION BELOW)
French term or phrase:barbacane
English translation:barbican
Entered by: Sarah Ponting
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11:07 May 19, 2003
French to English translations [PRO]
Art/Literary
French term or phrase: barbacane
Vue sur la barbacane

Caption relating to picture of the 'Fortresse de Zambujal à Torres Vedras, Portugal'.

Dates from 3rd millennium BC.
MSH
Local time: 06:42
barbican
Explanation:
"barbican noun
A tower or other fortification on the approach to a castle or town, especially one at a gate or drawbridge."

The American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language

--------------------------------------------------
Note added at 2003-05-19 11:10:31 (GMT)
--------------------------------------------------

\"You may have heard of moats and drawbridges, but barbicans may be unfamiliar. Those stone outerworks stood in front of the gate of a castle or bridge and helped prevent invaders from gaining access to the main entryway. Up to a point, the case for the history of the word barbican is well fortified. It is clear that English speakers seized the term from the Middle French barbacane, which in turn had been taken from the Medieval Latin barbacana (both of those roots had the same meaning as the modern word). The etymological path crumbles from there, however. Some speculate that the ultimate ancestor of barbican might lie in a Persian word meaning \"house on a wall,\" but that speculation has never been proven. \"

http://www.spellingbee.com/cc03/Week24/archive.htm#barbican
Selected response from:

Sarah Ponting
Italy
Local time: 07:42
Grading comment
4 KudoZ points were awarded for this answer

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Summary of answers provided
4 +14barbican
Sarah Ponting


  

Answers


1 min   confidence: Answerer confidence 4/5Answerer confidence 4/5 peer agreement (net): +14
barbican


Explanation:
"barbican noun
A tower or other fortification on the approach to a castle or town, especially one at a gate or drawbridge."

The American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language

--------------------------------------------------
Note added at 2003-05-19 11:10:31 (GMT)
--------------------------------------------------

\"You may have heard of moats and drawbridges, but barbicans may be unfamiliar. Those stone outerworks stood in front of the gate of a castle or bridge and helped prevent invaders from gaining access to the main entryway. Up to a point, the case for the history of the word barbican is well fortified. It is clear that English speakers seized the term from the Middle French barbacane, which in turn had been taken from the Medieval Latin barbacana (both of those roots had the same meaning as the modern word). The etymological path crumbles from there, however. Some speculate that the ultimate ancestor of barbican might lie in a Persian word meaning \"house on a wall,\" but that speculation has never been proven. \"

http://www.spellingbee.com/cc03/Week24/archive.htm#barbican


Sarah Ponting
Italy
Local time: 07:42
Native speaker of: Native in EnglishEnglish
PRO pts in pair: 114

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
agree  Elisabeth Toda-v.Galen
3 mins
  -> merci, Elisabeth

agree  hirselina
3 mins
  -> thanks

agree  irat56: Tout à fait!
9 mins
  -> merci

agree  Jonathan Widell: Cf. Barbican Centre in London
20 mins
  -> my Dad's got a flat there :-)

agree  Florence B: Yes we have one right here in Tiffauges
30 mins
  -> merci, Oddie

agree  Sara Freitas
58 mins
  -> thanks, Sara

agree  Peter McCavana: Probably a BARBICAN "tower projecting over the fortifications of a castle, in particular over a gateway". But barbacane can also be a meurtrière (i.e. LOOPHOLE) in a fort, etc.
1 hr
  -> thanks, Peter

agree  cjohnstone
1 hr
  -> thanks, Catherine

agree  chaplin: merci du cours d'histoire, passionnant!
1 hr
  -> thanks - you're welcome ;-)

agree  Nancy Bonnefond
2 hrs
  -> merci, Nancy

agree  Jean-Luc Dumont: from a gateway to a loophole to the Tube (2 stops from Kings Cross station) - from the Arabic (water drain in a wall) to the French the English
3 hrs
  -> well, don't you just learn something new every day? Thanks ;-)

agree  Amy Williams
6 hrs
  -> thanks, Amy

agree  Gayle Wallimann
20 hrs
  -> thanks, Gayle

agree  reliable
1 day22 hrs
  -> thanks
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