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Uncertain. Possibly from a Cariban language term such as Galibi Carib siko (“chigoe”) (early recorded variant chico), from Proto-Cariban *tikô, or else a West African borrowing such as Wolof or Yoruba jiga (“insect”).
chigoe (plural chigoes)
- A small tropical flea, Tunga penetrans, whose females burrow under the skin of animals, including humans, and lay their eggs, causing strong irritation and sores.
Tunga penetrans — see chigger