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A bantam is any small variety of fowl, especially chickens. The name bantam is derived from the city of Bantam — currently known as Banten Province or previously Banten Residency — once a major seaport, in Indonesia. European sailors restocking on live fowl for sea journeys found the small native breeds of chicken in South-east Asia to be useful, and any such small poultry came to be known as a bantam.