American Indian

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American + Indian. The noun is attested since 1702, the adjective since shortly thereafter.


American Indian (plural American Indians)

  1. A member of some indigenous peoples of the Americas, especially the United States, but excluding the Inuit, Yupik, and Aleuts.
  2. (Canada) An indigenous person from the United States.

Usage notes[edit]

  1. The term American Indian is generally accepted and sometimes replaced by Native American. However, it may cause offense if intended to include Canadian First Nations people.
  2. This term can sometimes be confused with 'Indian American' (i.e. an immigrant or descendant of an immigrant from India)


Related terms[edit]



American Indian (comparative more American Indian, superlative most American Indian)

  1. Relating to the indigenous peoples of the Americas or their languages.

See also[edit]