AskDefine | Define Bohemian

Dictionary Definition

Bohemian adj
1 of or relating to Bohemia or its language or people
2 unconventional in especially appearance and behavior; "a bohemian life style"


1 a member of a nomadic people originating in northern India and now living on all continents [syn: Gypsy, Gipsy, Romany, Rommany, Roma]
2 a native or inhabitant of Bohemia in the Czech Republic
3 a nonconformist writer or artist who lives an unconventional life

User Contributed Dictionary

see bohemian



  1. In the context of "countable": a native or resident of Bohemia
  2. In the context of "uncountable": the dialect of the Czech language spoken in Bohemia
  3. In the context of "countable|archaic}} a Gypsy

Extensive Definition

Bohemians are the people of Bohemia, in the Czech Republic, inhabitants of the former Kingdom of Bohemia, located in the modern day Czech Republic. The name derives from the Latin term for the Celtic tribe inhabiting that area, the Boii, who were called Boiohaemum in the early Middle Ages. The word "Bohemians" was never used by the local Czech (Slavic) population. In Czech, the region since the early Middle Ages has been called only "Čechy" (Bohemia) or "Království české" (Kingdom of Bohemia), and its mainly Czech-speaking inhabitants were called "Češi".
In other European vernaculars and in Latin (as Bohemi), the word "Bohemian" or a derivate was used to designate all inhabitants of Bohemia. If the Czech ethnic origin was to be stressed, combinations like "Bohemian of Bohemian language" (Čech českého jazyka), "a real Bohemian" (pravý Čech) etc. were used.
It was not until the 19th century that other European languages began to use the word "Czechs" (in English — Tschechen in German, tchèques in French) in a deliberate (and successful) attempt to distinguish between inhabitants of the western part (Bohemia) of the Czech Republic and the eastern (Moravia) + northeastern part (Silesia).
Bohemian in Swedish: bohem
Bohemian in Chinese: 波希米yyÓ亞人

Synonyms, Antonyms and Related Words

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