coon

coon

[koon]
noun
2.
Slang: Extremely Disparaging and Offensive. a contemptuous term used to refer to a black person.
3.
a rustic or undignified person.

Origin:
1735–45, Americanism; aphetic form

Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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Collins
World English Dictionary
coon (kuːn)
 
n
1.  informal short for raccoon
2.  offensive, slang a Black person or a native Australian
3.  offensive (South African) a person of mixed race

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009
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Etymonline
Word Origin & History

coon
short for raccoon, 1742, Amer.Eng. It was the nickname of Whig Party members in U.S. c.1848-60, as the raccoon was the party's symbol, and also had associations with frontiersmen (who stereotypically wore raccoon-skin caps), which probably was ultimately the source of the
Whig Party association (the party's 1840 campaign was built on a false image of wealthy William Henry Harrison as a rustic frontiersman). The insulting U.S. meaning "black person" was in use by 1837, no doubt boosted by the enormously popular blackface minstrel act "Zip Coon" (George Washington Dixon) which debuted in New York City in 1834, and is said ult. to be from Port. barracoos "building constructed to hold slaves for sale." It is perhaps much older (one of the lead characters in the 1767 colonial comic opera "The Disappointment" is a black man named Raccoon). Coon's age is 1843, Amer.Eng., probably an alteration of British a crow's age.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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American Heritage
Abbreviations & Acronyms
coon
raccoon
The American Heritage® Abbreviations Dictionary, Third Edition
Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.
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