Feature Word: Moccasin

Definition:

a soft leather shoe, usually made from deerskin, originally made and worn by Native American Indians; often decorated, especially with beads.

Description:

The word moccasin in association with Native American footwear has been adopted by the greater American public but it was never a universally understood word within the different Native American tribes.  Moccasin was the word for shoe in the Virginia Algonquian language and was passed into English as a generalization through the encounters early English settlers had with the native community.  Captain John Smith of the Jamestown settlement is attributed with noting the translation in his 1612 glossary, ‘mockasins: shoes.’  In actuality, each tribe used words in their own language or dialect to signify shoe/slipper and it is coincidence that has made ‘moccasin’ the lasting word in English.  It is more than coincidence and surely a tribute to the beauty of the design and image of the moccasin that it has been preserved as a style of shoe until today and continues to permeate the broader fashion market.

Source:

History Blog: http://blog.aurorahistoryboutique.com/tag/word-origin-of-moccasins/

Moccasin

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Definition:

a soft leather shoe, usually made from deerskin, originally made and worn by Native American Indians; often decorated, especially with beads.

Description:

The word moccasin in association with Native American footwear has been adopted by the greater American public but it was never a universally understood word within the different Native American tribes.  Moccasin was the word for shoe in the Virginia Algonquian language and was passed into English as a generalization through the encounters early English settlers had with the native community.  Captain John Smith of the Jamestown settlement is attributed with noting the translation in his 1612 glossary, ‘mockasins: shoes.’  In actuality, each tribe used words in their own language or dialect to signify shoe/slipper and it is coincidence that has made ‘moccasin’ the lasting word in English.  It is more than coincidence and surely a tribute to the beauty of the design and image of the moccasin that it has been preserved as a style of shoe until today and continues to permeate the broader fashion market.

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