Try Our Apps


Gobble up these 8 terms for eating


[hot-n-tot] /ˈhɒt nˌtɒt/
Origin of Hottentot
1670-80; < Afrikaans; origin uncertain
Related forms
Hottentotic, adjective Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
Cite This Source
Examples from the Web for Hottentot
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • He began to feel he should never get it: they were near the high-road; he could not keep the Hottentot to himself much longer.

    A Simpleton Charles Reade
  • On the south they are confronted with the Hottentot languages.

  • To threaten a disobedient servant with the jambok—be he Hottentot, Fingo, or Caffre—is to bring him back to kneeling obeisance.

    The Vee-Boers Mayne Reid
  • He resolved to keep his Hottentot all to himself if possible.

    A Simpleton Charles Reade
  • Of course, if you ask a Hottentot to evenings, you have to explain him.

    Somehow Good William de Morgan
  • The Hottentot suggested that this was an excellent opportunity.

    A Simpleton Charles Reade
  • Now, what is the use or comfort of a duchesse to a Hottentot family?

    Letters from the Cape Lady Duff Gordon
  • The Hottentot, on the contrary, raised his head, and ventured a little way into the stream.

    A Simpleton Charles Reade
British Dictionary definitions for Hottentot


noun (offensive)
(pl) -tot, -tots a former name for Khoikhoi (sense 1)
any of the languages of this people, belonging to the Khoisan family
Usage note
When referring to the people the accepted word nowadays is Khoikhoi. Hottentot continues to be used for some animal and plant names, as in Hottentot fig
Word Origin
C17: from Afrikaans, of uncertain origin
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
Cite This Source
Word Origin and History for Hottentot

1670s, from S.African Dutch, said to mean "stammerer," it is from hot en tot "hot and tot," nonsense words imitative of the clicking, jerking Khoisan speech.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
Cite This Source

Word of the Day

Word Value for Hottentot

Scrabble Words With Friends

Nearby words for hottentot