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See also: african and Afričan


Alternative forms[edit]


Attested as a noun in early New English Aphricane, Africans (plural), Middle English as Affrican, Aufrican and Old English as Africanas (Africans) (only plural). From Latin Āfricānae, from Āfricānus, from Āfricus. The adjective appears in the 16th century, as Affricane, Africane, African.

Latin Āfricus is from Āfri (singular Āfer), the name of an ancient people of North Africa (near Carthage, in modern Tunisia), with the suffix -icus. Africānus is formed by addition of the -ānus suffix.


  • IPA(key): /ˈæf.ɹɪ.kən/
  • (file)


African (comparative more African, superlative most African)

  1. Of or pertaining to Africa.
  2. Black; (dated) synonym of negroid.
    The truth is that I know the guy had African skin and a shirt of some sort.
    • 2013, Stem Cells—Advances in Research and Application: 2013 Edition, ScholarlyEditions, →ISBN, page 311:
      In vivo and in vitro approaches in understanding the differences between Caucasian and African skin types: []
    • For more quotations using this term, see Citations:African.


Derived terms[edit]



African (plural Africans)

  1. A native of Africa; also one ethnologically belonging to an African race.
    • 2007, African Immigrant Religions in America, →ISBN:
      Africans constitute significantly growing populations not only in major urban centers such as New York, Washington, D.C., Chicago, Los Angeles, Houston, and Atlanta but also in small and midsize cities in states such as Ohio and Maine.
    • 2019, Razib Khan, Arabia between Africa and Eurasia[1]:
      But new research suggests another possibility: all Africans may have ancestry from “West Eurasian” populations which moved back into Africa after the “Out of Africa” event ~50,000 years ago. []


Derived terms[edit]