from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License
- n. An Englishman.
from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
- n. In Cape Dutch use: A contemptuous name for an Englishman.
- n. An Englishman just out from home, a new-comer to the colony.
From Afrikaans rooinek. There are several theories to explain the origin of this epithet, such as it being a reference to the then red collars of British military uniforms, or that it stems from the red markings the British farmers put on their imported Merino breed of sheep, but the most commonly accepted theory is that it relates to the fact they sunburnt easily, because unlike the Afrikaners they were new to Africa and so dressed inappropriately (i.e. wore inadequate hats, e.g. sola topees (pith helmets), or no hat at all). (Wiktionary)