also caviare, "roe of certain large fish, salted and served as food," 1550s, from French caviar (16c.), from Italian caviaro (modern caviale) or Turkish khaviar, from Persian khaviyar, from khaya "egg," from Middle Persian khayak "egg," from Old Iranian *qvyaka-, diminutive of *avya- (from PIE *ōwyo‑, *ōyyo‑ "egg," which is perhaps a derivative of the root *awi- "bird"). The second element is Persian dar "bearing." The Russian name is ikra.
updated on November 16, 2022