Meaning of Barbary Coast

Bar'bary Coast'

Pronunciation: [key]
  1. the Mediterranean coastline of the former Barbary States: former pirate refuge.
  2. the waterfront district of San Francisco in the 19th century, notorious for its cheap bars and nightclubs, prostitutes, gambling houses, and high incidence of crime.
Random House Unabridged Dictionary, Copyright © 1997, by Random House, Inc., on Infoplease.