Also found in: Acronyms, Encyclopedia, Wikipedia.
n. Chiefly British Offensive Slang
Used as a disparaging term for a poor or uneducated young person, especially one who behaves in a brash or vulgar manner and wears ostentatious clothing and jewelry.
[Ultimately (possibly by back-formation from British slang chavvy, child) from Romani chavo, Romani boy, unmarried Romani man, from Middle Indic chāva, young of an animal, of unknown origin.]
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.
(Peoples) informal derogatory Brit a young working-class person whose tastes, although sometimes expensive, are considered vulgar by some
[perhaps from Romany chavi a child]
Collins English Dictionary – Complete and Unabridged, 12th Edition 2014 © HarperCollins Publishers 1991, 1994, 1998, 2000, 2003, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2011, 2014
chav[ˈtʃæv] n → caillera
Collins English/French Electronic Resource. © HarperCollins Publishers 2005