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[hoo-zher] /ˈhu ʒər/
a native or inhabitant of Indiana (used as a nickname).
(usually lowercase) any awkward, unsophisticated person, especially a rustic.
Origin of Hoosier
An Americanism dating back to 1920-30; of uncertain origin
Related forms
Hoosierdom, noun Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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British Dictionary definitions for Hoosier


(US) a native or inhabitant of Indiana
Word Origin
C19: origin unknown
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 Hoosier

"native or resident of Indiana," by c.1830, American English, of unknown origin; fanciful explanations were printed in 1830s newspapers. Said to have been first printed Jan. 1, 1833, in the "Indianapolis Journal," in a poem, "The Hoosiers Nest," by John Finely, which poem was said to have been written in 1830 ["The Word Hoosier," "Indiana Historical Society Publications," vol. IV, No. 2, 1907], and to have been in oral use from late 1820s. Seemingly it originated among Ohio River boatmen; perhaps related to English dialectal (Cumberland) hoozer, used of anything unusually large [Barnhart]. For other theories, see the above quoted source.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Slang definitions & phrases for Hoosier



  1. A rustic; hick (1846+)
  2. A prison guard (1930s+ Prison)

[origin uncertain; perhaps related to southern Appalachian hoozer, ''anything unusually large, humdinger'']



A native or resident of Indiana (1826+)

The Dictionary of American Slang, Fourth Edition by Barbara Ann Kipfer, PhD. and Robert L. Chapman, Ph.D.
Copyright (C) 2007 by HarperCollins Publishers.
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