noun Usually Disparaging.
(in the South Atlantic States) a term used to refer to a poor, uneducated person from a rural area.
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- clay court,
- clay flour,
- clay mineral,
- clay pigeon,
- clay road,
- clay stone
Origin of clay eater
An Americanism dating back to 1835–45
This term refers to the eating of clay-rich dirt, a persistent custom among poor white and black people in some rural areas of the South.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019
Examples from the Web for clay eater
The term "sand-hiller," or "clay-eater," is a terrible one of reproach, and is applied unsparingly by the aristocrats.Daring and Suffering:|William Pittenger