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A shantytown or slum, especially in Brazil.
[Brazilian Portuguese, after the Morro da Favela, a ramshackle housing area constructed on a hill in Rio de Janeiro in 1897 by impoverished soldiers returning from the suppression of a separatist movement in northeast Brazil, after the Morro da Favela, literally, "hill of the favela," a hill in northeast Brazil fortified by the soldiers during the conflict, from favela, the Brazilian shrub Cnidoscolus quercifolius of the spurge family bearing seeds resembling fava beans, from diminutive of Portuguese fava, fava bean, from Latin faba; see bha-bhā in Indo-European roots.]
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.
(in Brazil) a shanty or shantytown
[C20: from Portuguese]
Collins English Dictionary – Complete and Unabridged, 12th Edition 2014 © HarperCollins Publishers 1991, 1994, 1998, 2000, 2003, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2011, 2014
n., pl. -las.
a shantytown in or near a city in Brazil.
[1945–50; < Brazilian Portuguese]
Random House Kernerman Webster's College Dictionary, © 2010 K Dictionaries Ltd. Copyright 2005, 1997, 1991 by Random House, Inc. All rights reserved.
A Portuguese word meaning shantytown, used especially in Brazil.
Dictionary of Unfamiliar Words by Diagram Group Copyright © 2008 by Diagram Visual Information Limited