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90s Slang You Should Know


[blak-uh-moo r] /ˈblæk əˌmʊər/
noun, Older Use: Disparaging and Offensive.
a contemptuous term used to refer to a black person.
a contemptuous term used to refer to any dark-skinned person.
Origin of blackamoor
First recorded in 1540-50; unexplained variant of phrase black Moor
Usage note
So-called blackamoors, or black Moors, were originally black people from North Africa who worked as servants and slaves in wealthy European households. The negative connotation of the term comes from its historical association with servitude and from the perception that black Moors were strangely exotic. In 1596, Queen Elizabeth I targeted them for deportation. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
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Examples from the Web for blackamoor
Historical Examples
  • "You ought to get one studded with diamonds at that price," laughed Aladdin, and then just for a joke he turned to the blackamoor.

    Jack and the Check Book John Kendrick Bangs
  • Six years, and you have turned from a white-skinned Irishman into a blackamoor!

    Paddy Finn W. H. G. Kingston
  • I've no right to complain, if you will go spending a fortune to whitewash the blackamoor!

  • “But somebody did try to wash a blackamoor white,” said Bob.

    Middy and Ensign G. Manville Fenn
  • Waiting upon her at either hand were the blackamoor and the negress.

    Heralds of Empire Agnes C. Laut
  • They think it a beauty, and say white teeth are the sign of a blackamoor.

    Devereux, Complete Edward Bulwer-Lytton
  • "They might as well hope that I shall become a blackamoor," said Christabel, scornfully.

    Mount Royal, Volume 2 of 3 Mary Elizabeth Braddon
  • But it is mere waste of soap to attempt to wash a blackamoor white.

    Faustus Friedrich Maximilian von Klinger
  • The blackamoor appeared to say that Deliverance Dobbins was "a-goin' in fits" on the dispensary floor.

    Heralds of Empire Agnes C. Laut
  • He is a blackamoor, and derives his extraction from the spice lands.

    The Book of Christmas Thomas K. Hervey
British Dictionary definitions for blackamoor


/ˈblækəˌmʊə; -ˌmɔː/
(archaic) a Black African or other person with dark skin
Word Origin
C16: see Black, Moor
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for blackamoor



"dark-skinned person," 1540s, from black (adj.) + Moor, with connecting element.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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