- an entertainer, especially in a minstrel or vaudeville show, made up in the role of a black person. By the mid-20th century, these entertainers had declined in popularity because their comic portrayal of negative racial stereotypes was considered offensive.
- the facial makeup, as burnt cork, used in this role: They performed in blackface.
- Printing. a heavy-faced type, usually darker than boldface.
Origin of blackface
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018
Examples from the Web for blackface
Was the blackface scene with Gene Wilder in Silver Streak an important step in how American audiences view minstrelsy?How Richard Pryor Beat Bill Cosby and Transformed America
David Yaffe, Scott Saul
December 10, 2014
White suburbanites getting dolled up in blackface for Ray Rice Halloween costumes.‘Dear White People’: How An Ex-Publicist’s Twitter Became One of the Year’s Most Important Films
October 30, 2014
None have performed in blackface to my knowledge, but the decade is still young.Why Isn't the NRA Defending Ferguson’s Blacks?
August 19, 2014
“In my race for the U.S. Senate, I was painted in blackface with big red lips and called an Uncle Tom,” Steele told the Beast.The Secret War On Black Republicans
July 11, 2014
Thanks to the presence of blackface and KKK costumes, her offensive fete went viral and earner her instant infamy.Why It’s Time to End Blackface, Finally
October 31, 2013
In the upper valleys of the Alps there are many local varieties, one of which at Ossola is like the Scottish blackface.
- a performer made up to imitate a Black person
- the make-up used by such a performer, usually consisting of burnt cork
- a breed of sheep having a dark face
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