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A bantam (Indonesian: Ayam kate) is any small variety of fowl, usually of chicken or duck. Most large chicken breeds have a bantam counterpart, which is much smaller than the standard-sized fowl, but otherwise similar in most or all respects. A true bantam chicken is naturally small and has no large counterpart.
The word bantam derives from the name of the seaport city of Bantam in western Java, Indonesia. European sailors restocking on live fowl for sea journeys found the small native breeds of chicken in Southeast Asia to be useful, and any such small poultry came to be known as a bantam.
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- "Online Etymology Dictionary". Etymonline.com. Retrieved 2012-08-13.