Mafa(?) prop. n.. (Linguistics) A Chadic language spoken south of Lake Chad; called also Matakam.
Ma"fi*a(?) }, n. [It. maffia.] 1. A secret society which organized in Sicily as a political organization, but is now widespread among Italians, and is used to further or protect private interests, reputedly by illegal methods; called also the Sicilian Mafia. [wns=2]
[Webster 1913 Suppl.]
2. A group of loosely associated of criminal organizations in the United States, some having ties to the Sicilian Mafia, and organized in "families"; the term is applied to the entire group of organizations, or to any one local group. Also, loosely, organized groups of criminals anywhere, as the Russian
Syn. -- syndicate, mob, Cosa Nostra, La Cosa Nostra, organized crime.
[WordNet 1.6 + PJC]
3. Any tightly knit group of trusted associates having strong control or influence in some area; as, Kennedy and his Irish
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Fri 21st February 2020