Definition of Black Maria noun from the Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary

 

Black Maria

 noun
noun
BrE BrE//ˌblæk məˈraɪə//
 
; NAmE NAmE//ˌblæk məˈraɪə//
 
(old-fashioned, informal) Types of vehicle
 
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a police van that was used in the past for transporting prisoners in See related entries: Types of vehicle Word Origin mid 19th cent. (originally US): said to be named after a black woman, Maria Lee, who kept a boarding house in Boston and helped police in escorting drunk and disorderly customers to jail.