high yellow


noun Slang: Sometimes Disparaging and Offensive.

a term used to refer to a light-skinned Black person.

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Also high yaller [yal-er], /ˈyæl ər/, high yeller [yel-er]. /ˈyɛl ər/.

Origin of high yellow

First recorded in 1920–25

usage note for high yellow

This term implies that the person has a high proportion of white ancestry and looks more like a white person than a Black person. The term was most commonly used in the American South in the late 19th century and early 20th century, though it is still sometimes used today by both white people and Black people. See also yellow.

OTHER WORDS FROM high yellow

high-yellow, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2020