/tab"ee/, n., pl. tabbies, adj., v., tabbied, tabbying.
1. a cat with a striped or brindled coat.
2. a domestic cat, esp. a female one.
3. a spinster.
4. a spiteful female gossip or tattler.
5. See plain weave.
6. a watered silk fabric, or any other watered material, as moreen.
7. striped or brindled.
8. made of or resembling tabby.
9. to give a wavy or watered appearance to, as silk.
[1630-40; back formation from F tabis (taken as pl.), MF (a)tabis silk cloth < ML attabi < Ar 'attabi, deriv. of (al-)'Attabiyah, quarter of Baghdad where the silk was first made, lit., the quarter of (Prince) 'Attab]
/tab"ee/, n.
(in the southeastern U.S.) a building material composed of ground oyster shells, lime, and sand, mixed with salt water.
[1765-75, Amer.; said to be of West African orig.]

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   type of dark-striped coat colouring found in both wild and domestic cats (cat, domestic). One of the most common coat colours, the tabby pattern dates back to domestic cats in ancient Egypt. It is a recognized colour variety in purebred cats and is frequently seen in cats of mixed ancestry. Tabby colouring is highly variable but, for show cats, should consist of the following dark markings: stripes and whorls on the face and cheeks; a pattern like butterfly wings across the shoulders; two rings around the chest; bands on the back and sides; and rings about the legs and tail. Allowable ground colours are brown (see photograph—>), silver gray (see photograph—>), bluish ivory, and reddish brown (see photograph—>).

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Universalium. 2010.

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  • Tabby — Tab by, v. t. [imp. & p. p. {Tabbied}; p. pr. & vb. n. {Tabbying}.] To water; to cause to look wavy, by the process of calendering; to calender; as, to tabby silk, mohair, ribbon, etc. [1913 Webster] …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

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