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From The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.48:
Zouave \Zouave\ (?; 277), n. [F., fr. Ar. Zouaoua a tribe of Kabyles living among the Jurjura mountains in Algeria.] (Mil.) (a) One of an active and hardy body of soldiers in the French service, originally Arabs, but now composed of Frenchmen who wear the Arab dress. (b) Hence, one of a body of soldiers who adopt the dress and drill of the Zouaves, as was done by a number of volunteer regiments in the army of the United States in the Civil War, 1861-65. [1913 Webster]