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Alteration of Spanish cuarterón ("offspring of European and mestizo"), from cuarto ("fourth"), from Latin quartus ("fourth")


quadroon (plural quadroons)

  1. (dated) A person of three-fourths Caucasian descent and one fourth African descent.
    • 1868, Alcott, Louisa May, Little Women, ch. 47:
      There were slow boys and bashful boys, feeble boys and riotous boys, boys that lisped and boys that stuttered, one or two lame ones, and a merry little quadroon, who could not be taken in elsewhere, but who was welcome to the 'Bhaer-garten', though some people predicted that his admission would ruin the school.
  2. (Australia, dated) A person of three-quarters Aboriginal descent and one quarter Caucasian descent; a person of one quarter Aboriginal descent.
    • 1938, Xavier Herbert, Capricornia, Chapter V, p. 63; Chapter VIII, p. 120 [1]
      Diana was a black quadroon, her father being a blackfellow.
      He was the father of four quadroons who were regarded as half-castes because the lighter part of their mother's blood was Asiatic, and he was only too well aware of what their future would be should he desert them.

See also


quadroon (not comparable)

  1. (dated) Having three-fourths Caucasian descent and one-fourth African descent.


See also

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