Meaning of octoroon in English:


Pronunciation /ˌɒktəˈruːn/


(also octaroon)
dated, offensive
  • A person who is one-eighth black by descent.

    • ‘He has no trouble referring to ‘full-bloods’, ‘half-castes’, ‘octoroons’.’
    • ‘When Ellen was reading stories of old New Orleans, the concept of ‘mulattos’ and ‘octoroons’ prompted her to curious questions.’
    • ‘Yes, in the American south well past the days of slavery, you could find references to maroons, quadroons, octoroons, etc.’
    • ‘For example, in Latin America neither Jim Crow laws nor the octoroon designation existed.’
    • ‘On one wall is a 1953 birth certificate in which the artist's father is listed as octoroon.’


Mid 19th century from octo-‘eight’, on the pattern of quadroon.