AVADAVAT to AYAH
AVADAVAT, s. Improperly for Amadavat. The name given to a certain pretty little cage-bird (Estrelda
amandava, L. or Red Wax-Bill) found throughout India, but originally brought to Europe from Ahmadabad
in Guzerat, of which the name is a corruption. We also find Ahmadabad represented by Madava: as
in old maps Astarabad on the Caspian is represented by Strava (see quotation from Correa below).
[One of the native names for the bird is lal, ruby, which appears in the quotation from Mrs. Meer Hassan
o qual veyo dAmadava principall cidade do reino.In S. Botelho, Tombo, 228.
greater the resistance they made, the more of their blood was spilt in their defeat, and when they took
to flight, we gave them chase for the space of half a league. And it is my belief that as far as the will of
the officers and lascarys went, we should not have halted on this side of Madavá; but as I saw that my
people were much fatigued, and that the Moors were in great numbers, I withdrew them and brought
them back to the city.D. João de Castros despatch to the City of Goa respecting the victory at Diu.Correa,
1648.The capital (of Guzerat) lies in the interior of the country and is named Hamed-
Ewat, i.e. the City of King Hamed who built it; nowadays they call it Amadavar or Amadabat.Van
1673.From Amidavad, small Birds, who, besides that they are spotted with white and Red
no bigger than Measles, the principal Chorister beginning, the rest in Consort, Fifty in a Cage, make
an admirable Chorus.Fryer, 116.
a few presents now and thenchina, shawls, congou tea,
avadavats, and Indian crackers.The School for Scandal, v. i.]
amadavats, and other
songsters are brought thither (Bombay) from Surat and different countries.Forbes, Or. Mem. i. 47.
[The 2nd ed. (i. 32) reads amadavads.]
[1832.The lollah, known to many by the name of haver-
dewatt, is a beautiful little creature, about one-third the size of a hedge-sparrow.Mrs Meer Hassan
Ali, Observat. ii. 54.]
AVATAR, s. Skt. Avatara, an incarnation on earth of a divine Being. This word first appears in Baldaeus
(1672) in the form Autaar (Afgoderye, p. 52), which in the German version generally quoted in this
book takes the corrupter shape of Altar.
[c. 1590.In the city of Sambal is a temple called Hari Mandal (the temple of Vishnu) belonging to a
Brahman, from among whose descendants the tenth avatar will appear at this spot.Ain, tr. Jarrett, ii.
1672.Bey den Benjanen haben auch diese zehen Verwandlungen den Namen daas sie Altare
heissen, und also hat Mats Altar als dieser erste, gewähret 2500 Jahr.Baldaeus, 472.
Avatárs or descents of the deity, in his capacity of Preserver.Sir W. Jones, in Asiat. Res. (reprint) i.
1812.The Awatars of Vishnu, by which are meant his descents upon earth, are usually counted
Maria Graham, 49.
1821.The Irish Avatar.Byron.
1845.In Vishnu-land what Avatar?Browning,
Dramatic Romances, Works, ed. 1870, iv. pp. 209, 210.
all which cannot blind us
to the fact that the Master is merely another avatar of Dr Holmes himself.Sat. Review, Dec. 14, p.
builds up a curious History of Spiritualism, according to which all matter is mediately
or immediately the avatar of some Intelligence, not necessarily the highest.Academy, May 15th,
1875.Balzacs avatars were a hundred-fold as numerous as those of Vishnu.Ibid., April 24th,
AVERAGE, s. Skeat derives this in all its senses from L. Latin averia, used for cattle; for his deduction
of meanings we must refer to his Dictionary. But it is worthy of consideration whether average, in its
special marine use for a proportionate contribution towards losses of those whose goods are cast into
the sea to save a ship, &c., is not directly connected with the Fr. avarie, which has quite that signification.
And this last Dozy shows most plausibly to be from the Ar. awar, spoilt merchandise. [This is rejected
by the N.E.D., which concludes that the Ar. awar is merely a mod. Arabic translation and adaptation
of the Western term in its latest sense.] Note that many European words of trade are from the Arabic; and
that avarie is in Dutch avarij, averij, or haverij.(See Dozy, Oosterlingen.)
AYAH, s. A native ladys-maid or murse-maid. The word has been adopted into most of the Indian
vernaculars in the forms aya or aya, but it is really Portuguese (f. aia, a nurse, or governess; m.