The word barbeque actually has a Norman origin, coming from old Anglo-Norman literature. However, many believe it comes from French, where the term is “barbe a queue,” or from “beard to tail.” This is not completely accurate, since pigs do not have beards. This allusion would also work for goats, although we’d be surprised if it actually originated in French.
According to Wikipedia, the word barbecue is a derivative of the Taino language, a pre-Columbian language in the Caribbean. The word originally referred to a traditional native method of smoking and cooking meat over an open flame, while barbacoa describes a wooden framework used for the purpose. Experts say there are four main styles of barbecue, each with a different method of cooking and sauce.
In the US, the word barbecue refers to food that is cooked on a grill or fire. It is also used as a generic term for an outdoor party. The etymology of the word is quite interesting. It explains the emergence of black-owned barbecue joints in nearly every major city.
According to the Dictionary of National Biography, the word barbecue was first used in the Caribbean by the Taino people. These people smoked food over a wood fire by hanging it over an open air rack or around coals. In addition to smoking the meat, the barbacoas served as a place to sleep, store food, and even make shelter.