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

  • n. A person whose ancestry is one-eighth Black.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. someone having one-eighth black ancestry

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. The offspring of a quadroon and a white person; a mestee.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. The offspring of a quadroon and a white person; a person having one eighth negro blood.

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

  • n. an offspring of a quadroon and a white parent; a person who is one-eighth black


octo- + (quad)roon.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
From octo- ("eight") + -roon, alteration of ending of cuarterón ("quadroon") (Wiktionary)


  • One house in particular was called the octoroon house.

    Twice Sold, Twice Ransomed Autobiography of Mr. and Mrs. L. P. Ray

  • The octoroon was a large man, of about the size of the third lieutenant, and he could have made a good deal of mischief if he had been so disposed.

    Stand By The Union

  • President, and Declaration of Independence author as his slave, concubine, mother of his unacknowledged illegitimate "octoroon" children, etc.

    Who Speaks for Sally Hemings?

  • I speculate that the word used in that other sense is a typical Oz contraction, of "octoroon" (cf. "ocky", also in AND, for "octopus"), ignorantly and locally applied to East Asiatics instead of "A person of one-eighth Aboriginal descent" (AND). TRAI(T).

  • She tells of an "octoroon" who "passed" as white, only to be killed by her husband when found out.

    A Chair, A Fireplace & A Tea Cozy

  • Slide 12: 1896, Plessy v. Ferguson • Homer Plessy (an "octoroon" could not ride in white railway car) • Separate but equal • One drop rule of hypodescent • Ratification of spatial segregation  legal enforcement of Jim Crow laws 12

    Recently Uploaded Slideshows

  • Video: analysis from the cake wrecks blog. tags: tales of adventure and octoroon frosting

    today is the first day of kwanzaa

  • In 1890, at the height of the Jim Crow laws and kind of an obsession with defining what black people were, the federal government allowed you, on your census form, to be white, black, mulatto, quadroon or octoroon.

    American Lives: The 'Strange' Tale Of Clarence King

  • Also, I'm going to start positively identifying as octoroon.

    I hope when the end comes it is painless

  • I found myself staring at him-could he be the child of a Sioux and an octoroon?



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