, pluralEskimos (especially collectively) Eskimo for 1.
a member of an indigenous people of Greenland, northern Canada, Alaska, and northeastern Siberia, characterized by short, stocky build and light-brown complexion.
either of two related languages spoken by the Eskimos, one in Greenland, Canada, and northern Alaska, the other in southern Alaska and Siberia.
< earlier Esqimawe
), apparently via French
(of 16th-century Basque fishermen) < Spanish esquimao
) < Montagnais
a name for the Micmac,
extended or transferred to the Labrador Eskimo among the eastern Montagnais;
perhaps literally, snowshoe-netter (compare Ojibwa aškime·
to net snowshoes); cf. husky
Eskimoan, adjectiveEskimoid [es-kuh-moid] /ˈɛs kəˌmɔɪd/ Show IPA, adjectivepro-Eskimo, adjective, noun, pluralpro-Eskimos, pro-Eskimo.
The name Inuit,
by which the native people of the Arctic from northern Alaska to western Greenland call themselves, has largely supplanted Eskimo
in Canada and is used officially by the Canadian government. Many Inuit consider Eskimo
derogatory, in part because the word was, erroneously, long thought to mean literally “eater of raw meat.” Inuit
has also come to be used in a wider sense, to name all people traditionally called Eskimo,
regardless of local self-designations. Nonetheless, Eskimo
continues in use in all parts of the world, especially in historical and archaeological contexts and in reference to the people as a cultural and linguistic unity. The term Native American
is sometimes used to include Eskimo and Aleut peoples. See also Indian