1795, "to bring to a center, draw to a central point;" 1800, "come to a center," from central + -ize, on model of French centraliser (1790). A word from the French Revolution, generally applied to the transferring of local administration to the central government. Related: Centralized; centralizing.
Government should have a central point throughout its whole periphery. The state of the monthly expences amounted to four hundred millions; but within these seven months, it is reduced to one hundred and eighty millions. Such is the effect of the centralization of government; and the more we centralize it, the more we shall find our expenses decrease. [Louis Antoine de Saint-Just, "Discourse on the State of the Finances," 1793]
"large block of mountains, more or less distinctly defined; a central mountain mass, the dominant part of a range of mountains," 1885, from French massif "bulky, solid" (see massive), also used as a noun in French, as in Massif Central, name of the plateau in the middle of southern France.
black African community outside Johannesburg, South Africa, formed from first letters of South Western Townships. Related: Sowetan.
Swahili word for "lion," also figuratively "a warrior, a leader;" it enters into English writings in Africa.
Moroccan capital, from Arabic ar-ribat, from ribat "fortified monastery."
ancient region in central Greece which included Delphi, from Greek Phōkis. Related: Phocian.
chief language of Ghana in West Africa; also known as Akan, it is in the Niger-Congo language family.
"pertaining to Madagascar," the large island off the southeast coast of Africa, 1835, apparently an alteration of Madagascar (compare French Malgache).