late 14c., "thick, sweet liquid," from Old French sirop "sugared drink" (13c.), and perhaps from Italian siroppo, both from Arabic sharab "beverage, wine," literally "something drunk," from verb shariba "he drank" (compare sherbet). Spanish jarabe, jarope, Old Provençal eissarop are from Arabic; Italian sciroppo is via Medieval Latin sirupus. In English, formerly also sirup, sirop.
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