seraglio


seraglio

noun, plural se·ragl·ios.

  1. the part of a Muslim house or palace in which the wives and concubines are secluded; harem.
  2. a Turkish palace, especially of the sultan.

noun plural -raglios or -rails

  1. the harem of a Muslim house or palace
  2. a sultan’s palace, esp in the former Turkish empire
  3. the wives and concubines of a Muslim

n.“harem,” also the name of a former palace of the sultan in Istanbul, 1580s, from Italian seraglio, alteration of Turkish saray “palace, court,” from Persian sara’i “palace, inn,” from Iranian base *thraya- “to protect” (cf. Avestan thrayeinti “they protect”), from PIE *tra-, variant form of root *tere- “to cross over, pass through, overcome” (see through). The Italian word probably reflects folk etymology influence of serraglio “enclosure, cage,” from Medieval Latin serraculum “bung, stopper” (see serried).

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