Etymology
Advertisement
pangolin (n.)

1774, "scaly, toothless, ant-eating mammal of Java," from Malay (Austronesian) peng-goling "roller," from its habit of curling into a ball; from peng- (denominative prefix) + goling "to roll." Later extended to related species elsewhere in Asia and in Africa.

Related entries & more 
Advertisement
cockatoo (n.)

name given to various birds of the parrot family, 1610s, from Dutch kaketoe, from Malay (Austronesian) kakatua, possibly echoic, or from kakak "elder brother or sister" + tua "old." Also cockatiel, cockateel (1863), from Dutch diminutive kaketielje (1850), which is perhaps influenced by Portuguese. Spelling influenced by cock (n.1).

Related entries & more 
rattan 

also ratan, type of climbing palm with tough, flexible stems that are economically valuable for making chair-bottoms, walking sticks, baskets, etc., 1650s, from Malay (Austronesian) rotan, rautan, according to OED from raut "to trim, strip, peel, pare."

Related entries & more 
yam (n.)
1580s, igname (current form by 1690s), from Portuguese inhame or Spanish igname, from a West African language (compare Fulani nyami "to eat;" Twi anyinam "species of yam"); the word in American and Jamaican English probably is directly from West African sources. The Malay name is ubi, whence German öbiswurzel.
Related entries & more 
Japan 
1570s, via Portuguese Japao, Dutch Japan, acquired in Malacca from Malay (Austronesian) Japang, from Chinese jih pun, literally "sunrise" (equivalent of Japanese Nippon), from jih "sun" + pun "origin." Japan lies to the east of China. Earliest form in Europe was Marco Polo's Chipangu.
Related entries & more 
Advertisement
sago (n.)

"starchy foodstuff made of the piths of palms," 1570s, via Portuguese and Dutch from Malay (Austronesian) sagu, the name of the palm tree from which it is obtained (attested in English in this sense from 1550s). Also borrowed in French (sagou), Spanish (sagu), German (Sago).

Related entries & more 
lemon (n.1)

"ovate, pale yellow citrus fruit," c. 1400, lymon, from Old French limon "citrus fruit" (12c.), which comes via Provençal or Italian from Arabic laimun, Persian limun. Apparently brought from India to the Levant by the Arabs 9c. or 10c.; the word is perhaps ultimately from an Austronesian word of the Malay archipelago, such as Balinese limo "lemon," Malay limaw "citrus fruit, lime" (compare lime (n.2)).

Meaning "person with a tart disposition" is from 1863. For the sense "worthless thing," see lemon (n.2). Slang meaning "a Quaalude" is 1960s, from Lemmon, name of a pharmaceutical company that once manufactured the drug. The surname is from Middle English leman "sweetheart, lover." Lemon-juice is attested from 1610s; the candy lemon-drop from 1807. The East Indian lemon-grass (1837) is so called for its smell.

Related entries & more 
camphor (n.)
whitish, translucent, volatile substance with a penetrating odor, the product of trees in east Asia and Indonesia, extensively used in medicine, early 14c., caumfre, from Old French camphre, from Medieval Latin camfora, from Arabic kafur, perhaps via Sanskrit karpuram, from Malay (Austronesian) kapur "camphor tree." Related: Camphorated.
Related entries & more 
ailanthus (n.)

"tree of heaven," type of fast-growing weed-tree native to China, brought to Europe and America in 18c.; 1807, Modern Latin, from Amboyna Malay (Austronesian) ailanto, said to mean "tree of the gods." The spelling was altered by influence of Greek anthos "flower" (for which see anther).

Related entries & more 
bamboo (n.)
type of giant grass common in the tropics, 1590s, from Dutch bamboe and/or Portuguese bambu, earlier mambu (16c.), probably from Malay (Austronesian) samambu, though some suspect this is itself an imported word, perhaps from Kanarese (Dravidian). Bamboo curtain in reference to communist China (based on iron curtain) is from 1949.
Related entries & more 

Page 4