See also: zigeuner



Zigeuner (plural Zigeuners)

  1. Alternative form of zigeuner




Middle High German Cigäwnär (mentioning, 1420s), compare Zeginer and Ziginer (15th century).

Most likely from a Greek term meaning "untouchable"; compare the Modern Greek designations Τσιγγάνοι (Tsingánoi), Αθίγγανοι (Athínganoi).[1][2][3] Cognate to Hungarian cigány and terms borrowed from it such as English tzigane, Portuguese cigano, French tzigane, Romanian țigan, and Russian цыга́н (cygán); see those entries for other cognates and for more information.

The extended senses derive from racist and/or Romantic stereotypes of the Roma.


  • (file)


Zigeuner m (strong, genitive Zigeuners, plural Zigeuner, feminine Zigeunerin)

  1. (sometimes offensive) Gypsy, member of the Roma, Romani person
  2. (sometimes offensive) member of any of several other nomadic minorities
  3. (offensive) disorderly, lazy or dodgy person
  4. (offensive) bohemian; unconventional or nonconformist artist or writer


Usage notesEdit

The Central Council of German Sinti and Roma rejects the use of "Zigeuner" as a designation for the Roma, regarding it as racist and as having been discredited by the Nazis' use of it. Nonetheless, some Romani individuals continue to use the term.[4]



Derived termsEdit


  • Dutch: zigeuner
  • English: zigeuner
  • Swedish: zigenare


  1. ^ 2004, Viorel Achim, The Roma in Romanian History (Bucharest), page 9
  2. ^ 2007, Jean-Pierre Liégeois, Roma In Europe, page 17
  3. ^ 1993, Struggling for Ethnic Identity: The Gypsies of Hungary (published by Human Rights Watch), page 1
  4. ^ Zu Besuch bei kölschen Sinti: "Markus Reinhardt und seine Familie leben seit Generationen in Deutschland. Den Begriff 'Sinti und Roma' mögen sie nicht, sie bevorzugen das deutsche Wort 'Zigeuner'. Oder kölsche Sinti."
  • Anna-Lena Sälzer, Arme, Asoziale, Außenseiter : Künstler- und »Zigeuner«-Diskurse von 1900 bis zum Nationalsozialismus, in »Zigeuner« und Nation : Repräsentation - Inklusion - Exklusion, put out by Herbert Uerlings and Iulia-Karin Patrut (in Frankfurt am Main in 2008), pages 203–230 (re use to designate ethnic groups like the Roma and cultural movements like the Bohemian movement of nonconformist artists)

Further readingEdit