Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. A group of peoples inhabiting the Arctic coastal regions of North America and parts of Greenland and northeast Siberia.
  • n. A member of any of these peoples. See Usage Note at Native American.
  • n. Any of the languages of the Eskimo peoples.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • proper n. A group of indigenous peoples inhabiting the Arctic, from Siberia, through Alaska and Northern Canada, to Greenland, including the Inuit and Yupik.
  • proper n. Any of the languages of the Eskimo.
  • n. A member of any of the Eskimo peoples.
  • adj. Of or relating to the Eskimo peoples.
  • adj. In, of, or relating to the Eskimo languages.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. One of a peculiar race inhabiting Arctic America and Greenland. In many respects the Eskimos resemble the Mongolian race.
  • n.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. One of a race inhabiting Greenland and parts of arctic America and Asia (on the Bering sea), on or near the coasts.
  • Of or pertaining to the Eskimos.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • n. a member of a people inhabiting the Arctic (northern Canada or Greenland or Alaska or eastern Siberia); the Algonquians called them Eskimo (`eaters of raw flesh') but they call themselves the Inuit (`the people')
  • n. the language spoken by the Eskimo

Etymologies

French Esquimaux, possibly from Spanish esquimao, esquimal, from Montagnais ayashkimew, Micmac.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
First attested 1584; obsolete Esquimawe, from French (plural) Esquimaux, from Spanish esquimao, esquimal (used by Basque fishermen in Labrador), from Old Montagnais ayaškimew, literally, 'snowshoe-netter' (cf. Montagnais assime·w 'she laces a snowshoe', Ojibwe aškime· 'to net snowshoes'). The name was originally applied by the Innu people to the Mi'kmaq and later transferred to the Labrador Inuit; see usage notes. It was also once thought to mean 'eaters of raw meat', but most authorities now dismiss this. (Wiktionary)

Examples

  • To add to the complication however, not all Eskimo-Aleut speaking peoples find the term Eskimo insulting at all4.

    A note about 'Inuit' and 'Eskimo'

  • There are many racial slurs out there but the term Eskimo, used for the people now referred to as Inuit as they in fact most often call themselves, is technically not one of them.

    A note about 'Inuit' and 'Eskimo'

  • The term Eskimo may be held to include all the Innuit population living on the Aleutian islands, the islands of Bering sea, and the shores both of Asia and America north of about latitude 64°.

    The First Landing on Wrangel Island With Some Remarks on the Northern Inhabitants

  • In Alaska the term Eskimo is commonly used, because it includes both Yupik and Inupiat, while Inuit is not accepted as a collective term or even specifically used for Inupiat (which technically is Inuit).

    WordPress.com News

  • So that anything the white man can thrust at the Eskimo in the educational process, it seems that the Eskimo is able to take it in his stride.

    The True North, Strong and Free

  • In his native surroundings the Eskimo is a happy and contented citizen of the Dominion.

    The Eastern Arctic Patrol

  • In Canada and Greenland [3] [4] [5] [6] the term Eskimo is widely held to be pejorative [3] [7] and has fallen out of favor, largely supplanted by the term Inuit.

    WordPress.com News

  • The dogs in appearance were something like what we know as Eskimo dogs, and also rather resembled the Chinese chow, with broad heads and rather short muzzles, prick ears, and a tail inclined to curl over the back.

    Pioneers in Canada

  • (The second Green Lantern had a young Inuit mechanic nicknamed "Pieface" -- as in "Eskimo Pie"; the world had advanced so far by 1960.)

    Archive 2009-06-01

  • But she caught at her husband's name and cried out in Eskimo: — Yes!

    IN THE FOREST OF THE NORTH

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