squaw

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English[edit]

English Wikipedia has an article on:
Wikipedia

Etymology[edit]

From Massachusett squàw (woman), from Proto-Algonquian *eθkwe·wa ((young) woman). Cognate with Abenaki -skwa (female, wife), Mohegan-Pequot sqá, Cree iskwew / ᐃᐢᑫᐧᐤ (iskeyw, woman), Ojibwe ikwe (woman). In the 1970s, some non-linguists began to claim that the word originally meant "vagina"; this has been discredited.[1] The first recorded version of the word was found in a book called Mourt’s Relation: A Journey of the Pilgrims at Plymouth written in 1622. The term was not used in a derogatory fashion but spoke of the “squa sachim or Massachusets Queen” in the September 20, 1621 journal entry.[2]

Pronunciation[edit]

  • IPA(key): /skwɔː/
  • (file)
  • Rhymes: -ɔː

Noun[edit]

squaw (plural squaws)

  1. (now offensive, ethnic slur) A woman, wife; especially a Native American woman.

Usage notes[edit]

Previously used neutrally, the word began to be used as a term of contempt in the late 1800s; it is now generally considered offensive.[3] See Wikipedia.

Derived terms[edit]

Translations[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Ives Goddard, The True History of the Word Squaw, in Indian Country News (April 1997), page 17A
  2. ^ The Word Squaw: Offensive or Not?, indiancountrytoday.com (archived)
  3. ^ Rina Torchinksy (2022-02-23), “The U.S. looks to replace a derogatory name used hundreds of times on federal lands”, in Race[1], NPR, retrieved 2022-02-23

French[edit]

Etymology[edit]

From English squaw.

Pronunciation[edit]

Noun[edit]

squaw f (plural squaws)

  1. squaw (not pejorative in French), Native American woman
    Synonym: Amérindienne
    Ces chefs, au nombre d'une douzaine, n’avaient point amené leurs femmes, malheureuses « squaws » qui ne s’élèvent guère au-dessus de la condition d’esclaves. (Jules Verne, Le Pays des fourrures, 1873)

Further reading[edit]