Car"a*van (?), n. [F. caravane (cf. Sp. caravana), fr. Per. karmwan a caravan (in sense 1). Cf. Van a wagon.]
A company of travelers, pilgrims, or merchants, organized and equipped for a long journey, or marching or traveling together, esp. through deserts and countries infested by robbers or hostile tribes, as in Asia or Africa.
A large, covered wagon, or a train of such wagons, for conveying wild beasts, etc., for exhibition; an itinerant show, as of wild beasts.
A covered vehicle for carrying passengers or for moving furniture, etc.; -- sometimes shorted into van.
© Webster 1913.