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A member of a class of higher Russian nobility that until the time of Peter I headed the civil and military administration of the country and participated in an early duma.
[Alteration (influenced by French boyard, from Russian boyarin) of Early Modern English boiaren, from Russian boyarin, from Old Russian bolyarinŭ, from Old Church Slavonic, probably from Bulgar Turkic (Turkic language of a Turkic tribe that settled in the Volga and Danube basins in the early Middle Ages ) *boyla er, noble man : boyla, Turkic nobleman of a rank below a khan (akin to Old Turkic boylā) + *er, man (akin to Turkish Old Turkic er).]
(Heraldry) a member of an old order of Russian nobility, ranking immediately below the princes: abolished by Peter the Great
[C16: from Old Russian boyarin, from Old Slavonic boljarinǔ, probably from Old Turkic boila a title]
bo•yar(boʊˈyɑr, ˈbɔɪ ər)
also bo•yard(-ˈyɑrd, -ərd)
1. a member of the nobility of Russia, before Peter the Great.
2. a member of a former privileged class in Romania.
[1585–95; earlier boiaren < Russian boyárin]