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[kwo-droon] /kwɒˈdrun/
noun, Older Use: Offensive.
a person having one-fourth black ancestry, with one black grandparent; the offspring of a mulatto and a white person.
Compare octoroon.
Origin of quadroon
1640-50; alteration of Spanish cuarterón, derivative of cuarto fourth < Latin quartus; see -oon Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
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Examples from the Web for quadroon
Historical Examples
  • He turned his glance to the quadroon; she understood it; the patient was seriously ill.

    Dr. Sevier George W. Cable
  • He was probably regarded as a quadroon who had been accepted by the white race.

  • I saw the quadroon approach this with silent tread, as if meditating some design.

    The Quadroon Mayne Reid
  • I was satisfied that the disappearance of the quadroon would be at once attributed to me.

    The Quadroon Mayne Reid
  • My conversation was with the Creole, my thoughts dwelt upon the quadroon.

    The Quadroon Mayne Reid
  • On one hand, the fear that their expression should not be understood and reciprocated by the quadroon.

    The Quadroon Mayne Reid
  • The quadroon smiled, but the moment after her look of sadness returned.

    The Quadroon Mayne Reid
  • The love of the quadroon was my source of pleasure; but, alas!

    The Quadroon Mayne Reid
  • The girl was a quadroon—that is, nearly, if not altogether, white.

    The Coxswain's Bride R.M. Ballantyne
  • In the West Indies he would certainly have been set down as a quadroon.

    The Beth Book

    Sarah Grand
British Dictionary definitions for quadroon


the offspring of a Mulatto and a White person; a person who is one-quarter Black
Word Origin
C18: from Spanish cuarterón, from cuarto quarter, from Latin quartus
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 quadroon

1707, "offspring of a white and a mulatto," from Spanish cuarteron (used chiefly of the offspring of a European and a mestizo), literally "one who has a fourth" (Negro blood), from cuarto "fourth," from Latin quartus (see quart), so called because he or she has one quarter African blood. Altered by influence of words in quadr-. There also was some use in 19c. of quintroon (from Spanish quinteron) "one who is fifth in descent from a Negro; one who has one-sixteenth Negro blood."

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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