GAZAT, s. This is domestic Hind. for ‘dessert.’ (Panjab N. & Q. ii. 184).

GECKO, s. A kind of house lizard. The word is not now in Anglo-Indian use; it is a naturalist’s word; and also is French. It was no doubt originally an onomatopoeia from the creature’s reiterated utterance. Marcel Devic says the word is adopted from Malay gekok [gekoq]. This we do not find in Crawfurd, who has také, takék, and goké, all evidently attempts to represent the utterance. In Burma the same, or a kindred lizard, is called tokté, in like imitation.

1631.—Bontius seems to identify this lizard with the Guana (q.v.), and says its bite is so venomous as to be fatal unless the part be immediately cut out, or cauterized. This is no doubt a fable. “Nostratis ipsum animal apposito vocabulo gecco vocant; quippe non secus ac Coccyx apud nos suum cantum iterat, etiam gecko assiduo sonat, prius edito stridore qualem Picus emittit.”—Lip. V. cap. 5, p. 57.

1711.—“Chacccs, as Cuckoos receive their Names from the Noise they make.…They are much like lizards, but larger. ’Tis said their Dung is so venomous,” &c.—Lockyer, 84.

1727.—“They have one dangerous little Animal called a Jackoa, in shape almost like a Lizard. It is very malicious…and wherever the Liquor lights on an Animal Body, it presently cankers the Flesh.”—A. Hamilton, ii. 131; [ed. 1744, ii. 136].
This is still a common belief. (See BISCOBRA).

1883.—“This was one of those little house lizards called geckos, which have pellets at the ends of their toes. They are not repulsive brutes like the garden lizard, and I am always on good terms with them. They have full liberty to make use of my house, for which they seem grateful, and say chuck, chuck, chuck.”—Tribes on My Frontier, 38.

GENTOO, s. and adj. This word is a corruption of the Portuguese Gentio, ‘a gentile’ or heathen, which they applied to the Hindus in contradistinction to the Moros or ‘Moors,’ i.e. Mahommedans. [See MOOR.] Both terms are now obsolete among English people, except perhaps that Gentoo still lingers at Madras in the sense b; for the terms Gentio and Gentoo were applied in two senses:

a. To the Hindus generally.

b. To the Telugu-speaking Hindus of the Peninsula specially, and to their language.

The reason why the term became thus specifically applied to the Telugu people is probably because, when the Portuguese arrived, the Telugu monarchy of Vijayanagara, or Bijanagar (see BISNAGAR, NARSINGA) was dominant over great part of the Peninsula. The officials were chiefly of Telugu race, and thus the people of this race, as the most important section of the Hindus, were par excellence the Gentiles, and their language the Gentile language. Besides these two specific senses, Gentio was sometimes used for heathen in general. Thus in F. M. Pinto: “A very famous Corsair who was called Hinimilau, a Chinese by nation, and who from a Gentio as he was, had a little time since turned Moor.…”—Ch. L.


1548.—“The Religiosos of this territory spend so largely, and give such great alms at the cost of your Highness’s administration that it disposes of a good part of the funds.…I believe indeed they do all this in real zeal and sincerity…but I think it might be reduced a half, and all for the better; for there are some of them who often try to make Christians by force, and worry the Gentoos (jentios) to such a degree that it drives the population away.”—Simao Botelho Cartas, 35.

1563.—“…Among the Gentiles (Gentios) Rão is as much as to say ‘King.’ ”—Garcia, f. 35b.

„ “This ambergris is not so highly valued among the Moors, but it is highly prized among the Gentiles.”—Ibid. f. 14.

1582.—“A gentile…whose name was Canaca.”—Castañeda, trans. by N. L., f. 31.

1588.—In a letter of this year to the Viceroy, the King (Philip II.) says he “understands the Gentios are much the best persons to whom to farm the alfandegas (customs, &c.), paying well and regularly, and it does not seem contrary to canon-law to farm to them, but on this he will consult the learned.”—In Arch. Port. Orient. fasc. 3, 135.

c. 1610.—“Ils (les Portugais) exercent ordinairement de semblables cruautez lors qu’ils sortent en trouppe le long des costes, bruslans et saccageans ces pauures Gentils qui ne desirent que leur bonne grace, et leur amitié mais ils n’en ont pas plus de pitié pour cela.”—Mocquet, 349.

1630.—“…which Gentiles are of two sorts…first the purer Gentiles…or else the impure or vncleane Gentiles…such are the husbandmen or inferior sort of people called the Coulees.”—H. Lord, Display, &c., 85.

1673.—“The finest Dames of the Gentues disdained not to carry Water on their Heads.”—Fryer, 116.

„ “Gentues, the Portuguese idiom for Gentiles, are the Aborigines.”—Ibid. 27.

1679.—In Fort St. Geo. Cons. of 29th January, the

  By PanEris using Melati.

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