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Barbarian, term originally used by ancient Greeks to denote any non-Greek-speaking people. As Greek culture spread with the conquests of Alexander the Great in Asia and the subsequent expansion of the Roman Empire in Europe, the word came to refer to peoples who lived beyond the borders of the Empire and therefore outside Greco-Roman civilization. It then took on a pejorative meaning and now refers to anyone considered uncivilized, primitive, or unsophisticated.

See also: Goths; Hun; Vandals.

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21st Century Webster's Family Encyclopedia21st Century Webster's Family Encyclopedia - Augusta to Barlach, Ernst