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Hoosier

[hoo-zher]
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noun
  1. a native or inhabitant of Indiana (used as a nickname).
  2. (usually lowercase) any awkward, unsophisticated person, especially a rustic.

Origin of Hoosier

An Americanism dating back to 1920–30; of uncertain origin
Related formsHoo·sier·dom, noun
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

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British Dictionary definitions for hoosier

Hoosier

noun
  1. 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

Word Origin and History for hoosier

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