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 (zo͞o-äv′, zwäv)
1. A member of a French infantry unit, originally composed of Algerian recruits, characterized by colorful uniforms and precision drilling.
2. A member of a group patterned after the French Zouaves, especially a member of such a unit of the Union Army in the US Civil War.

[French, from Berber Zwāwa, the Kabyle tribe from which the unit's members were originally recruited.]
American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright © 2016 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.


(zuːˈɑːv; zwɑːv)
1. (Military) (formerly) a member of a body of French infantry composed of Algerian recruits noted for their dash, hardiness, and colourful uniforms
2. (Military) a member of any body of soldiers wearing a similar uniform or otherwise modelled on the French Zouaves, esp a volunteer in such a unit of the Union Army in the American Civil War
[C19: from French, from Zwāwa, tribal name in Algeria]
Collins English Dictionary – Complete and Unabridged, 12th Edition 2014 © HarperCollins Publishers 1991, 1994, 1998, 2000, 2003, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2011, 2014


(zuˈɑv, zwɑv)

1. a member of a former body of infantry in the French army, composed orig. of Algerians, distinguished for their showy drill and picturesque uniforms.
2. a member of any military body adopting a similar dress and drill, esp. a member of any of certain volunteer regiments in the American Civil War.
[1820–30; < French < Arabic zawāwah]
Random House Kernerman Webster's College Dictionary, © 2010 K Dictionaries Ltd. Copyright 2005, 1997, 1991 by Random House, Inc. All rights reserved.
References in periodicals archive ?
49 MUW Employees Federal 412 Zouave Drive, Columbus, MS 39701
May 1917 included further trench tours, training at Berthonval Wood and at Vancouver Camp, and working parties and trench digging in the Zouave valley.
The statue of a Crimean soldier - known as the Zouave - on the Pont de l'Alma has long been used as a marker for water levels in the city.
and its southern offshoot, Zouave Valley, which ran behind the 4th Division's front.
"The regiment I joined wore the Zouave uniform and only two persons, a cousin and a particular friend, members of the regiment, knew that I was a woman," Williams said, according to Army archives.
People looking at the floods stand on the Alma bridge by the Zouave statue in Paris Jerome Delay
There were Jews, dark-skinned and dressed in the colorful gabardines and turbans of their Eastern climes, brought from their native Jerusalem for the occasion; swarthy Turks, with fez, zouave trousers, gold-laced coats and long curving [sic] or scimitars hanging at their sides; lithe-limbed horsemen from Araby the Blest; camel drivers, in picturesque flowing garb of dull reds, browns, blues and yellows.
Notable works include The Potato Eaters, The Zouave, Sunflowers, Almond Blossoms, Wheatfield with Crows - thought to be his last painting - any number of self-portraits, and the one that stopped me in my tracks, the simple but dazzlingly vibrant Wheatfield under Thunderclouds.
Captain Charles Green and five crew members had floated free of the tug Zouave near Pointe aux Barques.
The three left on the gun board Zouave. When all were on board, we put off from the wharf and remained at anchor in the harbor until Thursday morning, when at a given signal, we weighed anchor and started for Fortress Monroe.
I fitted elastic round the ankles Now I looked like an exotic Zouave infantryman from Algiers.