Punic (adj.)

"pertaining to or characteristic of Carthage or Carthaginians," 1530s, from Latin Punicus, earlier Poenicus "Carthaginian," originally "Phoenician" (adj.), Carthage having been founded as a Phoenician colony, from Poenus (n.), from Greek Phoinix "Phoenician" (see Phoenician). As a noun, "the (Semitic) language of Carthage," by 1670s.

Carthaginians were proverbial among the Romans as treacherous and perfidious. The Punic Wars were three wars between the Romans and the Carthaginians fought between 264 and 146 B.C.E. resulting in the overthrow of Carthage and its annexation to Rome. Related: Punical (early 15c.).

updated on February 04, 2021

Definitions of Punic from WordNet
punic (adj.)
tending to betray; especially having a treacherous character as attributed to the Carthaginians by the Romans;
Synonyms: perfidious / treacherous
Punic (n.)
the Phoenician dialect of ancient Carthage;
Punic (adj.)
of or relating to or characteristic of ancient Carthage or its people or their language;
Synonyms: Carthaginian
Etymologies are not definitions. From, not affiliated with etymonline.