from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition
- n. Mother.
- n. Offensive A Black nursemaid, especially one formerly in the southern United States.
from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License
- n. mamma; mother
- n. In the southern United States, a black nanny employed to look after white children.
from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English
- n. A child's name for mamma, mother.
from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
- n. Mother; mama: a childish word.
- n. Hence In the southern United States, especially during the existence of slavery, a colored female nurse; a colored woman having the care of white children, who often continue to call her mammy after they are grown up.
- n. Same as stone-lugger, 2.
from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.
- n. an offensive term for a Black nursemaid in the southern U.S.
- n. informal terms for a mother
"I'm a poor little beggar, my mammy is dead," and mine, entitled the "Crippled Child's" Complaint –
"Well, child, it does sound mighty strange; the people here will laugh at you, child, but I guess it won't be long before this old woman you call mammy will take herself off from a person who has so long held her in bondage."
She was both revered as "Mammy Pleasant" (in Cliff's novel, she cleverly presents a "mammy"-like M.E.P. playing the part while shrewdly smuggling fugitive slaves, whom she hid in her various houses and real-estate property, and moving about strategically in her militant support of the Harper's Ferry raid) and reviled as a "Voodoo Queen" (of course any black woman with that kind of power must have been putting spells on everyone, right?)
The whole family ... mammy, pappy, the free loadin 'mammy-in-law, the misguided chillin', and especially ‘lil cuz ...
When I was a little boy I was a house boy, 'cause my mammy was the house woman, but when the war broke I already been sent to the fields and mammy was still at de house.
My mammy was a Crossland negro before she come to belong to Master Joe and marry my pappy, and I think she come wid old Mistress and belong to her.
In the whole world (it was all she had asked) there was no white child to call her mammy, no white lackey or gentleman (it was the extent of her dreams) beholden to her as to a nurse.
Beaufort by de Rhett family, when my mammy was a little pickaninny.
"I guessed as much," said he, "yer see, after he got nabbed first, mammy she -- yer didn't know as mammy took an 'died, did yer, Bill?" and Joey faltered and let the Angel take possession of his cap and transfer it to her own curly head while the Tenement children applauded with jeering commendation, seeing there was a standing feud between Joey and the rest of the juvenile populace over its possession.
Den he whisper soft an 'low widout any words, jes' like a mammy was a-singin 'to her baby.