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Alternative formsEdit


From Efik [Term?] or Ibibio [Term?]; compare Gullah buckra (white person).


buckra (plural buckras)

  1. (Caribbean) A white person.
    • 1791, An Abstract of the Evidence Delivered before a Select Committee of the House of Commons in the Years 1790, and 1791, on the Part of the Petitioners for the Abolition of the Slave-Trade, London, p. 77,[1]
      As he was going to the stake, he turned about, and addressed himself to Mr. Jeffreys [] and said, “Buckra, you see me now, but to-morrow I shall be like that,” kicking up the dust with his foot.
    • 1803, Robert Charles Dallas, The History of the Maroons, London: Longman and Rees, Volume 1, Letter 3, p. 73,[2]
      To show the deadly hatred they bore the white people, Thicknesse, who was the first in the town, and the person left with them as a hostage, related, that having taken up his abode with Quao, his children could not refrain striking their pointed fingers at his breast as they would have done knives, had they been permitted, calling out, “Buckra, Buckra.”
    • 1831, Mary Prince, The History of Mary Prince, a West Indian Slave, Related by Herself, London: F. Westley and A.H. Davis, p. 9,[3]
      Oh the Buckra people who keep slaves think that black people are like cattle, without natural affection. But my heart tells me it is far otherwise.
    • 2014, Marlon James, A Brief History of Seven Killings, London: Oneworld, “General Rockers: December 2, 1976,”[4]
      They kick me in the face, beat me with the baton, whip me in me balls, beat me with a cat o’ nine like them name buckra massa []
  2. (dated, now rare, African American Vernacular, derogatory) A poor white person.
    • 1865, Thomas Wentworth Higginson, “Leaves from an Officer’s Journal” in The Atlantic Monthly, Volume 15, No. 87, January, 1865, p. 69,[5]
      “Dunno whether he been a buckra or not,” responded, doggedly, my Cerberus in uniform; “but I’s bound to keep him here till de corporal ob de guard come.”
    • 1941, Ed Barber, interview published in Slave Narratives: A Folk History of Slavery in the United States from Interviews with Former Slaves, Washington: Library of Congress, Volume 14: South Carolina Narratives, Part 1,[6]
      What I think of Abe Lincoln? I think he was a poor buckra white man, to de likes of me.


buckra (not comparable)

  1. (African American Vernacular, archaic) White.
    a buckra yam



Alternative formsEdit


From Efik [Term?] or Ibibio [Term?].




  1. white person

Further readingEdit

  • Frederic Cassidy, "Sources of the African Element in Gullah" in Lawrence Carrington (ed.), Studies in Caribbean Language (1983).