From Nikon (a brand of camera often used by professional photographers) + choir. The brand Nikon, which dates from 1946, is a blend of Japanese 日本光学 (Nippon Kōgaku, “Japan Optical”) (from 日本光学工業株式会社 (Nippon Kōgaku Kōgyō Kabushikigaisha, “Japan Optical Industries Corporation”)) and Ikon, a camera brand owned by Carl Zeiss AG.
- (Received Pronunciation) IPA(key): /ˈnɪkɒn kwaɪə(ɹ)/
- (General American) IPA(key): /ˈnaɪkɒn kwaɪɚ/
- Hyphenation: Ni‧kon choir
- (chiefly Britain, idiomatic) A large group of photographers simultaneously capturing images of a celebrity, producing numerous photographic flashes along with an accompanying din of clicking camera shutters.
1991 July 28, Roxanne Roberts, “State of the union, ten years after”, in The Washington Post, retrieved 31 August 2016, page F01:
- 2004 October 24, “Harry: ‘Spare heir’ with a tendency to snap”, in The Times of India (reprinted from The Sunday Times, London), retrieved 31 August 2016:
- [A]fter drinking vodka and cranberry juice at the Pangaea nightclub in the West End, he came out at to be confronted by the "Nikon choir" of paparazzi.
2013 July 23, Michael Cole, “Thinking of the late Princess Diana as her first grandchild is born”, in East Anglia Daily Times, archived from the original on 31 August 2016:
- Fortunately, the Royal baby has sensible parents. […] I congratulate them on how they managed to arrive at St Mary's hospital without the Nikon Choir outside getting sight of them.
The term is used especially with reference to press photographers who cover members of the British Royal Family.