Green’s Dictionary of Slang

nigger n.1

also nagur, neager, neeger, nega, negah, negar, neger, niger, nigga, niggah, niggar, niggor, nigguh, niggur, nigra
[ult. Lat. niger, black in colour, thence Early Mod. Eng. (later dial.) niger; thus advocated by HDAS, although the OED and DSUE prefer Sp. negro, black. Nigger has been used in a variety of combs. since 19C; both Webster III and the OED list a number of these, usu. referring to birds, animals and crops, without comment – the assumption being that, for better or worse, they are an accepted (if local) usage; while they are also based on stereotypes, it is more that of colour than of racist assumptions. Those combs. listed here, usu. unlisted in the standard dictionaries, may well have been colloq. in the 19C, but by their intrinsic hostility are, de facto, sl.; otherwise, nigger implies the usual derog. stereotypes as allotted to blacks: poverty, laziness, stupidity, lasciviousness, a propensity to mindless hedonism and violence]

1. a derog. term for a black person, orig. a slave.

Dekker Bankrouts Banquet F3: To curry fauour, with the Blacke King of Neagers.
[US] ref. in H. Rawson Dict. of Invective (1991) 269: John Rolfe, husband to Pocahontas, recorded in his journal the first shipment of blacks to Virginia: ‘there came in a Dutch man-of-warre that sold us 20 negars (8/20/1619)’.
[US] ‘News from Holland’s Leaguer’ in Rollins Pepysian Garland (1922) 401: Both Iewes, Turke and Neager [...] haue been at Hollands Leager.
[UK]S. Sewall diary 11 July (ed. H. Thomas; 1973) I 8: Jethro, his Niger, was then taken.
[US] ref. in H. Rawson Dict. of Invective (1991) 269: The inventory of an estate in the town of Gravesend, now part of Brooklyn, New York, included ‘One niggor boy’ (12/12/1689).
[UK] ‘Saint turn’d Sinner’ in D’Urfey Pills to Purge Melancholy VI 216: The Parson still more eager, / Than lustful Turk or Neger.
[UK]J. Gay Polly III v: But yet I don’t see, Brother Hacker, why we should be commanded by a Neger.
[Ire]K. O’Hara Midas II ii: Why take up with that beggar, And use your own Damaetas like a negar?
[US] in F. Moore Songs and Ballads of the Amer. Revolution (1855) 101: ’Twas yonder stood a pious wight, / And here and there a nigger.
[UK] ‘Plenipotentiary’ Burns Merry Muses of Caledonia (1965) 202: She was fond of the quid, for she had been well rid / From Washington down to a nigger.
[UK]W. Godwin Caleb Williams (1966) 81: The poorest neger, as a man might say, has some point that he will not part with.
[UK]T.H. ‘Punch’s Apotheosis’ in Smith Rejected Addresses 125: Wife, come to forgive what your black lover did [...] Why, neger, so eager about your rib immaculate?
[WI]M. Lewis 2 Jan. in Journal of a West India Proprietor (1834) 53: Look, Massa, look here! him nice lilly neger for Massa!
[US]H.B. Fearon Sketches of America 240: Each gave vent in the following language. [...] ‘It would have been of no small account if the niggar had been whipt to death.’ ‘I always serve my b-----d niggars that way.’.
[UK]‘One of the Fancy’ Tom Crib’s Memorial to Congress 4: That soldiers and guns, like ‘the Dev’l and his works,’ / Will henceforth be left to Jews, Negers, and Turks.
[US]National Advocate (N.Y.) 14 Apr. 2/4: I’ll give 25 dollars to the niger to make it up; strike me doleful.
[US]J.K. Paulding John Bull in America 219: They worry the puppies and kittens for amusement, when there are no little niggers to set the dogs at.
[UK]Marly; Planter’s Life in Jamaica 62: Oh, forgib him, poor neger, massa, and him bad neger neber no more, massa!
‘Jim Along Josey’ [lyrics] Dem nigger all rise when de bell does ring.
[UK]Dickens Oliver Twist (1966) 349: A half of moist sugar that the niggers didn’t work at all, afore they got it up to sitch a pitch of goodness.
[US]‘Ned Buntline’ Mysteries & Miseries of New York II 75: Niggers stand an almighty sight of beating, you know!
[UK]A.C. Mowatt Fashion II i: Madam curtsies – says she’s enchanted to see me – and orders her grinning nigger to show me a room.
[US]W.K. Northall Life and Recollections of Yankee Hill 30: Look here, Nigger, show a feller the Captain. Look here, you black sarpint, don’t stick out your lips at me.
[UK]E. Eden Semi-Attached Couple (1979) 219: Now for it, Luttridge; who flogs the niggers?
[UK]Cheshire Obs. 18 Aug. 8/3: Boff lookin’ quite black in the face [...] which was nuffin remawkable, considerin’ dey were boff niggahs.
[UK]Capt. Clutterbuck’s Champagne 122: Blessin’, massa! what blessin’ we got, poor negers, eh?
[UK]C. Rampini Letters from Jamaica 11: [of Jamaicans] ‘Them cussed niggers’ [...] There they were certainly – woolly heads, bare feet, ebon faces, loud voices.
[UK]J. Greenwood Wilds of London (1881) 92: They were funny ‘niggers’ — jolly, well-fed; all play and no-work darkies, whose sole business in life appeared to be to sleep away the morning, and throughout the afternoon play upon the banjo [...] varying the amusements by inventing conundrums.
[UK]Dundee Courier (Scot.) 30 June 7/5: She steadfastly regarded ‘Black Nell’. ‘So that is the nigger you’ve taken up with!’.
[US]G. Devol Forty Years a Gambler 32: All the niggers came to shake hands and say, ‘Glad youse back, Massa George’.
[US]Paul Dresser [song title] ‘I’se Your Nigger If Youse Wants Me, Liza Jane’: a coon serenade.
[UK]H. Macfall Wooings of Jezebel Pettyfer 95: I’s got no patience wid ’em, dese here B’bayados niggers. Thank Gahd, me mother she come’d out o’ Louisianna – dey grow proper coloured folks in Louisianna.
[US]S. Russell in Sampson Ghost Walks (1988) 316: The negro race has no objections to the word ‘coon’ and no objections to the word ‘darkey.’ We care nothing for the words black, colored, or Negro, but we do object to the word ‘nigger’ [...] There is no humor in the words ‘common nigger.’ The few people who enjoy the word belong to the slums of the earth.
[WI]Anderson & Cundall Jamaica Proverbs and Sayings 33: Neger wha fin’ dead man mus’ be de man who kill him.
[UK]Union Jack 5 May 1: He runs a sort of sailors’ home for niggers and Japs.
[NZ]N.Z. Truth 7 Feb. 6/4: Fred -[...] described as a half-caste Maori, looked more like a South Sea Islander. He is a decidedly handsome cut of a nigger.
[US]C. McKay Home to Harlem 5: He would rather hear ‘nigger’ than ‘darky,’ for he knew that when a Yankee said ‘nigger’ he meant hatred for Negroes, whereas when he said ‘darky’ he meant friendly contempt.
[UK]E. Waugh Vile Bodies 128: He didn’t mind niggers, Ginger said; remarking justly that niggers were all very well in their place.
[UK]G. Kersh They Die with Their Boots Clean 124: I’ve never been knocked off my feet [...] Except once. [...] A Jamaican nigger called Rube did it.
[US](con. 1941) J.H. Burns Gallery (1948) 161: Pehaps we should send the goddam nigras there.
[Aus]T. Ronan Vision Splendid 94: You’re a mob of swine. You’d get a man hung over a useless bastard of a nigger.
[UK]G.W. Target Teachers (1962) 191: He’d got complete sets of some the things only niggers and wogs can dream up.
[UK]C. Gaines Stay Hungry 218: This ain’t no ordinary nigra.
[UK]A. Salkey ‘Is the lan’ I want’ Jamaica (1983) 100: Them sayin’: / ‘I know somet’ing / I wouldn’ tell a man: / corn meal dumplin’ / no kill no Negah man!
[US]E. Bunker Animal Factory 64: Let the niggers go in while we freeze our asses off.
[US]T. Wolfe Bonfire of the Vanities 93: Two niggers tried to kill us, and we got away.
C. Cooper Noises in the Blood 205: Him is a nayga man!
[UK]G. Burn Happy Like Murderers 156: She wanted some big nigger to throw her down and fucking bang on top of her and treat her like a dog.
[US]C. Carr Our Town 282: Dusty had a fantasy of sending everyone back. ‘The niggers and blacks to Africa.’.
R. Papke Poems at the Edge of Differences 110: Her fambily is nayga, but / Dem pedigree is right.
Ace’s View [Internet] These children known as izikhotane (the boasters) are the descendant of South Africans who were once regarded as ‘kaffirs’ (niggers) under European colonialism.

2. a general derog. term applicable to anyone regardless of race/skin colour; in context, a foreigner.

[UK]‘Bill Truck’ Man o’ War’s Man (1843) 262: [by a Scot to an Englishman] Ye gibble-gabbling niger, that ye’re.
[UK]Belfast News Ltr 4 Feb. 4/1: Get out, you nager [...] I’ll lay you the heels before night, plase [sic] God.
[UK]Worcs. Chron. 19 Jan. 4/4: [spoken by a black servant to a Frenchman] ‘Go you France nigger, go bury yourself [...] you ole nigger’.
[UK]M. Reid Scalp-Hunters II 276: ‘There’s not one of them worth the price of her own hair.’ ‘Take the har then, and leave the niggurs!’ suggested a third.
[UK]Bell’s Life in London 8 June 5/4: There was no justice for an Irish gentleman, at all, at all, amonst the Saxon nagurs.
[US]A. Berkman Prison Memoirs of an Anarchist (1926) 163: I ain’t no gaycat to work. Think I’m a nigger, eh? No sir, the world owes me a living.
[US](con. late 19C) A. Gonzales Black Border 23: I yeddy suh ainjul w’ite en’ shiny lukkur staar een de sky, but you, nigguh! You black ez uh buzzut!
[US]Z.N. Hurston Dust Tracks On a Road (1995) 586: ‘Snidlits, don’t be a nigger,’ he would say to me over and over. ‘Niggers lie and lie!’ [footnote] The word Nigger used in this sense does not mean race. It means a contemptible person of any race.
[UK]C. Harris Three-Ha’Pence to the Angel 166: Best not to enlarge on the grotesque, the un-English. Good or bad, the niggers started at Calais.
[US]H.S. Thompson letter 2 Oct. in Proud Highway (1997) 641: When you turn up a freak on the staff [...] get that nigger off the premises.
[Ire]R. Doyle Commitments 9: An’ Dubliners are the niggers of Ireland [...] An’ the northside Dubliners are the niggers o’ Dublin.

3. used as neg. stereotype, but without an actual black subject, a lazy or generally inadequate person.

[UK]‘The Bamboozling Barer’ in Cove in Spedding & Watt (eds) Bawdy Songbooks (2011) IV 228: He tackled to then with vigour, / And puffed like a pig in a fit, / But, says she, I ne’er saw such a nigger, / You hav’nt got breath, deuce a bit.

4. used as a derog. term between blacks; also as term of direct address.

[UK]Marryat Peter Simple (1911) 245: The coloured people of Barbadoes [...] are immoderately proud, and look upon all the negroes who are born on other islands as niggers.
[UK]Bell’s New Wkly Messenger 23 Dec. 6/4: ‘Golly mighty, what ignoramus nigga you is’.
[US](con. 1843) Melville White-Jacket (1990) 279: May-Day confidentially told Rose Water that he considered him a ‘nigger’, which, among some blacks, is held a great term of reproach.
[US]‘Artemus Ward’ Among the Mormons in Complete Works (1922) 193: A speckled native, [...] gives me to understand that he is the only strictly honest person in Aspinwall. The rest, he says, are niggers — which the colored people of the Isthmus regard as about as scathing a thing as they can say of one another.
[US]J. O’Connor Wanderings of a Vagabond 385: ‘Who dat nigger?’ ‘Who es ’im?’ ‘Who knows ’im?’ was buzzed about among the colored beaux.
[NZ]Taranaki Herald (NZ) 3 Nov. 4/1: ‘I say, Sambo, less us jine de baseball club.’ ‘What for, nigger?’.
[UK]C. Chesnutt ‘Hot-Foot Hannibal’ in Conjure Woman 214: I ’lows dat’s none er yo’ bizness, nigger.
[US]N. Davis Northerner 154: Dish ’er de forwa’dest nigger on dis yearth!
[US]F. Dumont Darkey Dialect Discourses 19: Put money in dat sasser, for it’s a case foh ebbery nigger to ponder obber – Safety First!
[US]Capt. Billy’s Whiz Bang Mar. 15: Bastus — What’s you don, niggah, stole sumpin’?
[US] ‘The Master’s ‘Stolen’ Coat’ in T.W. Talley Negro Folk Rhymes 62: Ole Mosser bought a brand new coat, / He hung it on de wall, / dat Nigger stole dat coat away, / An’ wore it to de Ball.
[US]Z.N. Hurston Gilded Six-Bits (1995) 989: Dat stray nigger jes’ tell y’all anything and y’all b’lieve it.
[US]C. Himes ‘The Something in a Colored Man’ in Coll. Stories (1990) 405: Done jes got rid of one no-good nigger.
[US]C. Himes Crazy Kill 109: If you wasn’t such a goddam nigger I’d stick you in the heart for that.
[US](con. 1930s) H. Simmons Man Walking On Eggshells 81: ‘You dodo head. I’ma beat your butt.’ ‘Aw nigger, you ain’t gone do nothing. Dodo on you and yo mama too.’.
[UK]A. Salkey Late Emancipation of Jerry Stover (1982) 39: She looked her tormentor up and down and hissed venomously, ‘Nigger!’ And all that Josiah could find to say was: ‘Imagine a nigger calling a nigger a nigger!’.
[US]D. Goines Street Players 97: I told you to shut your fuckin’ mouth, nigger!
[US](con. 1970) J.M. Del Vecchio 13th Valley (1983) 90: ‘I ain’t fucken drunk, Nigger,’ Jax leered at Doc.
[UK]J. Mowry Way Past Cool 105: Ty’s lips curled back from his big teeth. ‘You stupid little nigger!’.
[US](con. 1990s) in J. Miller One of the Guys 112: ‘Nigger, what you saying?’.
[US]Kanye West ‘Graduation Day’ [lyrics] You’s a nigger, and I don’t mean that in no nice way.

5. (US black) used between blacks, with no moral/racial implications; late 20C+ use, typically in rap lyrics, can be sen as ‘reclaiming’ the term from its white/derog. use.

[US]D. Corcoran Pickings from N.O. Picayune 127: [the speaker is black] I ’ploys dis nigger and ’gages to teach him de boot-polishin’ bizness .
[Aus]Bell’s Life in Sydney 23 Oct. 3/3: [the speaker is black] Dat little nigger cum here to swear gin me who’ve been eight an’ twenty year in dis country.
[[UK](con. 1840s–50s) H. Mayhew London Labour and London Poor III 55: Jim. What for you do that? Me nigger! me like de white man. Him did break my nose].
[US]Courier (Lincoln, NE) 12 Dec. 10/2: ‘Canary Jim’, the blackest, smallest, toughest of them all, sang [...] ‘It’s haa’d, haa’d; haa’d to be a nigga, nigga — so haa’d’.
[US]J.W. Johnson Autobiog. of an Ex-Coloured Man (1927) 92: I noticed that among this class of coloured men the word ‘nigger’ was freely used in about the same sense as the word ‘fellow,’ and sometimes as a term of almost endearment.
[US]Du Bose Heyward Porgy (1945) 125: ‘I know dese hyuh nigers,’ he replied. ‘Dey is a decent lot. Dey wouldn’t gib no nigger away tuh de w’ite folks.’.
[US]‘J.M. Hall’ Anecdota Americana I 28: Yesterday I wus doin’ mah washin’ on de back po’ch like a good wife when mah nigger comes in from de field.
[US]C. Himes ‘The Night’s for Crying’ in Coll. Stories (1990) 132: A passing brownskin answered to the call of ‘Babe,’ paused before her ‘nigger’ in saddle-backed stance, arms akimbo.
[US](con. early 1930s) C. McKay Harlem Glory (1990) 23: No nigger running around [...] with a white person should ask another nigger for anything.
[US]T. Southern ‘Razor Fight’ in Southern (1973) 23: ‘Smart nigger can double his money quick,’ said C.K.
[US]H. Rhodes Chosen Few (1966) 161: Then niggahs got their heads smokin’.
[US]‘Iceberg Slim’ Airtight Willie and Me 30: I was about to tell him what a thoroughbred, stand-up Nigger he was.
[US](con. 1970s) G. Pelecanos King Suckerman (1998) 175: Nigger [...] don’t even turn around.
(con. 1971) D. Remnick King of the World 291: I [i.e. Muhammad Ali] was determined to be one nigger that the white man didn’t get.
[US]Ebonics Primer at www.dolemite.com [Internet] nigger Definition: [...] 2. a fellow black, a chum or an intimate friend. Example: Where you been nigger? Ain’t seen yo ass in weeks!
[US](con. 1990s) in J. Miller One of the Guys 118: ‘Whatever you do, don’t ever put that nigger before us [i.e. the gang]’.

6. any non-white foreign person.

[Aus]Bell’s Life in Sydney 26 Feb. 2/6: [He] went off to Indy to lead the Sepoys / Oh there ’mongst the nigger men / Jack with his trigger then / Scathered death and dismay.
A.C. Warner letter 31 May in Gupta Delhi between Empires (1991) 21: Rich old niggers [i.e. Indian princes].
in C. Hibbert The Great Mutiny: India 1857 (1978) 124: I don’t consider niggers in the same light as I would a white man.
[UK]T. Hughes Tom Brown’s School-Days (1896) 256: Fancy him on a South-Sea Island, with the Cherokees or Patagonians, or some such wild niggers!
[US]C. Abbey diary 30 Jan. in Gosnell Before the Mast (1989) 172: [of Pacific islanders] I all at once found myself enclosed by Kanackas. Never having been used to sit in the back seat with the niggers, I left.
[UK]W.H. Russell Diary in India II 412: ‘What is the difference between them and sepoys?’ ‘Well, [...] they’re all niggers alike; but I can trust my fellows.’.
S. Baker Ismailia I 283: His large herd of about 1,400 fat cattle were driven along [...] followed by the admiring population of thieving niggers.
[UK]Sporting Times 1 Nov. 3/4: Mr Lalmohun Ghose / As all India knows / Has remarkable powers argumentative / [...] / The Tories may snigger / And call him a nigger, / With their usual vulgar audacity.
[UK]Kipling ‘Loot’ in Barrack-Room Ballads (1893) 172: If you’ve knocked a nigger [i.e. Pathan] edgeways then ’e’s thrustin’ for your life.
[Aus]Truth (Sydney) 25 Feb. 1/8: Bourke is properly Afghan-cursed and camel-ridden now [...] The niggers parade the streets in broad daylight.
[US]‘Frederick Benton Williams’ (H.E. Hamblen) On Many Seas 268: Mr. Eastern poked his nose over the combings and wanted to know if the niggers [i.e. Ecuadorians] had found their men yet.
[US]F. Dumont Dumont’s Joke Book 102: He was a Chinyman [...] Dis yaller-faced nigger took me offen de hook and let me flop ’round in de grass.
[UK]Boy’s Own Paper 25 May 531: You and your pard [...] aren’t panning out enough to keep a nigger alive.
[NZ]N.Z. Truth 26 Jan. 6/4: Quaint how some girls and matured women will run to strange niggers [...] since the Fijians and Cook islanders have been pigged out on the Exhibition grounds.
[Aus]Sun. Times (Perth) 6 Aug. 2nd sect. 12/6: [of an Indian] Since the nigger is obviously an undesirable [...] why not ship him back to Kurrachi, accompanied by a suitable quantity of disinfectant.
[Aus]Worker (Brisbane) 4 Mar. 25/2: The Government winks the other eye at black-birding in New Guinea. the niggers are engaged in procuring sandalwood.
[Aus]Sun. Times (Perth, Aus.) 25 Feb. 14/2: ‘Don’t say that [...] to an Australian nigger,’ cautioned the boys, ‘or he’ll eat you’.
[UK]F. Slee diary 16 Oct. [Internet] The niggers [i.e. Indians] could not understand the sea as they had never seen the waves before.
[Aus]F. Garrett diary 8 May [Internet] Soup, fish, fowl, sweets, fruit, nuts, wine, beer (Bordeaux wine), finger bowls and niggers [i.e. Egyptians] to fan the flies away.
[Aus]R.D. Doughty diary 6 Apr. [Internet] Woke up somewhere about this morning by a nigger [i.e. Egyptian] crawling all over me, mistook me for the carriage door mat I think. Knew it was a nigger by the beautiful perfume that pervaded the air when such creatures are at large, also by the yell he emitted when I soiled my right boot.
[NZ]‘Anzac’ On the Anzac Trail 39: [E]ven the niggers, [i.e. Egyptians] keen as they were to sell their oranges, wouldn’t come within coo-ee of our mob.
[US]P. & T. Casey Gay-cat 70: [of Sikhs] Whites are not like these niggers.
[UK]O. Onions Peace in Our Time 162: The nigger was not a negro at all, but probably an Indian or Burmese [...] A couple of tables farther along sat other niggers (Japanese).
[UK](con. WWI) R. Graves Goodbye to All That (1960) 158: He said that the niggers (meaning the Indians) [etc.].
[US]P.G. Cressey Taxi-Dance Hall 44: Oh, these ‘Niggers’ (Filipinos) [...] are just ‘fish’ to the girls.
[UK]A. Burgess Enderby Outside in Complete Enderby (2002) 304: See these niggers here? Not the Marockers [...] Berbers or barbars, Barbar black shit.
[US]Tarantino & Avery Pulp Fiction [film script] 12: What’s the nigger gonna do, he’s Samoan.

7. (chiefly Aus./N.Z.) an Aborigine, a Maori.

[UK]C. Reade It Is Never Too Late to Mend III 136: ‘Have you any witnesses?’ ‘Yes, the nigger; he saw it.’.
[Aus]C. Money Knocking About in N.Z. 130: We removed to a respectable distance, where we should at least not be such easy pots for the concealed niggers.
[US]W.H. Thomes Bushrangers 262: [of an Aborigine] ‘How in the devil’s name can we trace her in the dark?’ roared Smith. ‘Why, by the aid of the nigger,’ answered Hez.
[Aus]Bulletin (Sydney) 17 Apr. 3/4: Mr. Jack, the Queensland Government geologist, and party, were recently attacked by blacks near Cape Granville. Mr. Jack received an ugly spear wound in the neck, but dispersed the niggers.
[Aus]H. Lawson ‘The Song of Old Joe Swallow’ in Roderick (1967–9) I 75: The bullick-drivin’, cattle-drovin’, / Nigger, digger, roarin’, rovin’ / Days o’ long ago.
[NZ]Eve. Post (Wellington) 9 Apr. 1: [of Aborigines] There were niggers about, and we used to have them as shepherds.
[Aus]Stephens & O’Brien Materials for Dict. of Aus. Sl. [unpub. ms.] 62: Spearing cattle, robbing homesteads [...] and offering resistance when pursued would be a good and valid reason for wiping out a few niggers.
[Aus] ‘Mustering Song’ in ‘Banjo’ Paterson Old Bush Songs 112: I found this scouting rather hot, / So I joined the niggers with the lot we’d got.
[Aus]Sun. Times (Perth) 30 July n.p.: Phenyong, the nigger [i.e. Aborigine] who escaped from Rottnest prison last week.
[Aus]Sun. Times (Perth) 25 Aug. 85/6: When a nigger made a row / For a portion of our grog.
[Aus]Gippsland Times (Vic.) 15 Sept. 1/4: He’s just a common nigger, known as Frank. An ordinary abo.
[Aus]Sun. Times (Perth) 10 July 45/8: [of Aborigines] A bob for the race known as niggers — / Black as the aces are black.
[Aus]E. Hill ‘Santa Claus of Christmas Creek’ in Rees Aus. Radio Plays 192: Those niggers! They don’t know what work is!
[US]N.B. Harvey Any Old Dollars, Mister? 41: You callin’ us Maori fellas nigger, heh?
[UK]Guardian Weekend 21 Aug. 23: Australia is guilty of [...] genocide: massacre (’Niggerhunts’ continued well into the 60s).
[NZ]A. Duff Jake’s Long Shadow 236: His parents used to say that to him about Maories. You’ll not bring any Maori niggers to this house!

8. a subservient person, a servant.

[US]T. Haliburton Sam Slick’s Wise Saws I 96: My father didn’t send me here to be your nigger.
[Aus]Bulletin (Sydney) 15 Oct. 6/4: A well-known jockey, brought up at Melbourne for damaging his wife with his hands and feet, bitterly resented the offensive interference of the police. ‘It was, after all, only a family affair,’ he remarked. Every man has a right to wallup his own nigger.
[US]H. Miller Tropic of Cancer (1963) 107: I’m grinding my balls off on that job [...] They’ve got us over here like a bunch of niggers.
[US]R. Chandler Playback 124: The class people of the town? He’s just a nigger to them.
[US]E. Torres Carlito’s Way 18: I ain’t gonna be a nigger all my life.
[US]S. Morgan Homeboy 136: I ain’t your nigger!
[US]D. Winslow The Force [ebook] I’m one of them. I’m their nigger now.

9. (also negro) a ‘nigger minstrel’, i.e. a white person performing in blackface; also attrib.

[UK]London Mag. Mar. 97/1: [A]n universal genius in the comic line [...] completely rigged out as a Nigger, and caricaturing even Rice’s original caricature.
[UK]Sam Sly Dec. 3/3: Mr. Dumbolton's troupe of niggers are delighting crowded audiences [...] There are three of the original Ethiopian Serenaders in the company; the rest are new to England.
[UK]Paul Pry 12 Mar. 4/2: Tom Roberts, the amusing nigger singer, remarking on a beauty speck on the cheek of that syren of song, Miss Ellis, compared it to a gem on a rose-leaf.
[UK]Paul Pry (London 15 Aug. n.p.: This is followed by Mr. and Master Wood, the latter being a perfect little wonder in the nigger line; a ‘coon,’ in fact, who, though a small singer, never sings small.
[Aus]N. Melbourne Advertiser 11 Feb. 3/1: Those members of the Carolina Minstrels who appeared in the ‘Precious Nigger Entertainment’.
[UK]J. Diprose London Life 57: london niggers – These are blackened vocalists called niggers.
[Aus]Bulletin (Sydney) 9 May 9/2: Our opinion is that Billy Emerson is the best all-round ‘nigger’ and his mob the best all-round mob, that have come our way. If you don’t like that lump it.
[UK]J.K. Jerome Three Men in a Boat 97: Considered as an article of dress for any human being, except a Margate nigger, it made him ill.
[UK] ‘’Arry in ’Arrygate’ (Second Letter) in Punch 15 Oct. 169/1: Twos a grand ‘Aughticultural Show’ / [...] / sports, niggers and a smart local band.
[UK]Bateman & LeBrunn [perf. Vesta Victoria] A 'oliday on One Pound Ten [lyrics] While the negroes wasn’t looking, well, I went round with a hat .
[UK]E. Pugh City Of The World 168: Marfa Simmons had niggers at her School Treat, and roundabouts and swings and that.
[UK]A. Brazil Fourth Form Friendship 84: ‘I believe the niggers are still here!’ exclaimed Myfanwy [...] ‘Oh! I caught a glimpse then of a tall white hat and a red-striped jacket’.
[NZ]Feilding Star (N.Z.) 11 Aug. 2/4: Nigger minstrelsy [...] is developing into a fine art [...] The Rongotea Niggers will stage an entertainment of superior quality.

10. anything coloured black, e.g. the black numbers of roulette.

[UK]Binstead & Wells Pink ’Un and Pelican 156: Billie planked down five out of his six gold pieces on the black [...] ‘Rien ne va plus!’ yelled the covey. Another second, and — up came the nigger.
[Aus]C.J. Dennis ‘The Stoush O’ Day’ in Songs of a Sentimental Bloke 27: Refreshed wiv sleep Day to the mornin’ mill / Comes jauntily to out the nigger, Night.
[Aus]‘Nino Culotta’ Gone Fishin’ 76: The official name for ‘niggers’, or blackfish, is ‘luderick’.
[Aus]R.G. Barrett You Wouldn’t Be Dead for Quids (1989) 32: Crooked yellow teeth, covered in enough blackfish bait to catch a school of niggers.

11. (US black) a close male or female friend, companion, boyfriend or husband, usu. constructed with possessive pronoun; thus my nigger

[US]C. Himes Crazy Kill 13: Trying to impress their niggers that they was scared of a little cutting.
[US]C. Himes Big Gold Dream 26: Look here nigger, I told you just to take the television set.
[US]Milner & Milner Black Players 48: The term nigger is often used by the men in many contexts, from affection to insult.

12. (US) a fellow human being, of any race or skin colour.

[US]H.S. Thompson letter 4 Aug. in Proud Highway (1997) 346: Niggerboy: As I recall, my letter from Guayaquil was done in a fit of drink.
[US](con. 1985–90) P. Bourjois In Search of Respect 96: You’re a working nigga’ and I respect you the way you are right now.
[US]P. Beatty Tuff 112: [of a white man] That old motherfucker look like he about to have a heart attack. Nigger better calm down.

13. (US black) a non-black person who is considered to act in a very positive manner in relation to black culture or who identifies strongly with it.

G. Smitherman Talkin and Testifyin 62: Nigguh [...] Sometimes it means culturally black, identifying with and sharing the values and experiences of black people.
[US](con. 1985–90) P. Bourjois In Search of Respect 42: He grabbed me by the shoulders to thank me: ‘You’re a good nigga’, Felipe. You’re a good nigga’. See you tomorow.’.

In derivatives

niggerish (adj.) (US)

used by blacks and whites, exhibiting perceived negative black stereotypes; e.g. lazy, couldn’t-care-less, stubborn; a general derog. term of abuse.

[US]J. Neal Brother Jonathan II 67: Ye great niggerish lookin’, wap-sided, haw —.
[US]J. Neal Down-Easters 66: How is their temper? Why you know as well as me—they’re right down ugly when they’re mad, clear niggerish.
Westminster Rev. III 301: I have met Southern ladies, elegant-looking women, whose manner of speech and intonation were so ‘niggerish,’ that it required a knowledge of this peculiar dialect fully to understand them.
[US] letter in Silber & Sievens Yankee Correspondence (1996) 95: A knowing leer to his eye & an extremely niggerish grin lurking about his mouth.
[US]Atlantic Monthly XVIII 79/1: Aunt Judy’s piety was in no respect the niggerish kind; when I say ‘colored,’ I mean one thing, respectfully; and when I say ‘niggerish,’ I mean another, disgustedly [DA].
Christian Register 88 1006: The negroes are becoming ashamed of these spirituals because they consider them vulgar and ‘niggerish’ and a relic of slavery.
[US]Living Age 283 152: Her mouth looks as if it was full of plums and wouldn't shut; and her eyes go up like a dyin’ duck’s; and her hair is niggerish, and so is her skin; and she's fat and sloppy.
L. Riding Anarchism is Not Enough 78: [note] Take, for example, niggerish jazz: its real strength and attraction is that it is movement free from significance; pure, ritualistic, barbaric social pleasure.
[US]C. McKay Banjo 150: I wish you-all would say corn bread instead of corn pone. Corn pone is so niggerish.
[US]Mencken ‘Designations for Colored Folk’ in AS XIX:3 169: Niggerish to 1825.
N. Giovanni ‘Black Judgements’ Black Feeling, Black Heart (1970) 98: You / with your bullshit niggerish ways / want to destroy me.
[US]Charley Phil Rosenberg in Heller In This Corner (1974) 93: I got niggarish [sic] and I just let it [i.e. the championship] go.
[US]P. Beatty White Boy Shuffle 137: You can’t embarrass me with your poetry and your niggerish ways.
[US]Kanye West ‘Heard ’Em Say’ [lyrics] He too niggerish now.
niggeritis (n.) [sfx -itis]

1. (W.I.) the urge to lie down and take a nap after a heavy meal.

J. Lester Look Out, Whitey!: Black Power's Gon’ Get Your Mama! 18: Got a dose of niggeritis. I’ll be in tomorrow.
[WI]cited in Allsopp Dict. Carib. Eng. Usage (1996).
L. Elliott Coming for to Carry 116: Ther Mexicans! they have their siesta. We from the Rock! we suffer from plain and ordinary niggeritis.
V.M. Gregg Jean Rhys’s Historical Imagination 88: The lazy black, who only desires to sleep after eating, is a common trope of colonialist discourse. [...] the term ‘niggeritis’ has been facetiously coined to refer to this purported deficiency.
‘Relentless Aaron’ Extra Mafrital Affairs 122: Niggeritis. You get that after you eat real good.
D.B. Nurse What’s a Black Critic To Do 234: Niggeritis is a joking term some blacks use to describe that drowsy after-eating feeling.

2. (US) a fig. disease, based on a racist attitude to black people (also used of inter-black attitudes).

[US]N. Heard Howard Street 159: It was enough to give him niggeritis.
T. Shakur Tupac Amaru Shakur, 1971–1996 126: We got to kill this niggeritis. Niggas hate me just ’cause of what you doin’, niggas plotting on you ’cause of women, and niggas hatin’ to see you shine.
A. Hitchcock We’ve Always Been Free [ebook] I have Niggeritis / A common fear of niggers / You know / Like Arthritis Affects the bones / Tonsillitis Affects the throat / Niggeritis affects the mind.
niggerize (v.)

(US) to be politically marginalized, i.e. to be rendered ‘black’ and de facto unimportant.

[US]Harper’s Mag. Oct. 57: There’s a whole lotta people out there who are afraid to win because they don’t think of themselves as running the show. They’ve been niggerized, the only way they know is suckin’ [HDAS].
[US]Harper’s Mag. July 68: Life in these here United States is a series of niggerizations. The schools, she said, ‘niggerize’ us, the churches ‘niggerize’ us, the police and the federal government ‘niggerize’ us .
S. Tesich ‘Niggerization’ on Srpska Mreza [Internet] Just as we can niggerize now anyone in the world we can also in our magnanimity choose to deniggerize, for a while at least, whole countries and peoples.
niggerology (n.) [sfx -ology n.]

1. (US) a derog. term for abolitionism.

Boston Morning Post 17 Aug. 1/5: Niggerology is a new name for abolitionism.
Extra Globe 19 Sept. 272/2: He goes as far in favor of niggerology, as any of the hot-headed, disorganizing Abolitionists in the country.
E. Mathews Autobiography 122: He would go round and urge the people not to listen to a minister who preached ‘niggerology’.
(con. 1853) B.R. Dain Hideous Monster of the Mind 236: Reconsider the comments to Hammond that [Josiah] Nott’s ethnological work was ‘niggerology’ or ‘the nigger business’.

2. (US) a derog. term for a black studies course at college or school.

[US]Maledicta II:1+2 (Summer/Winter) 165: Niggerology ‘Black Studies,’ as discussed among white faculty members in a college lunchroom.
niggersome (adj.)

(Aus.) having a dark complexion.

[Aus]Truth (Sydney) 30 Dec. 1/6: Blanche [...] had hair as black as charred ironbark [...] ‘Why in Barcoo did you call your niggersome girl Blanche?’ I asked.

In compounds

nigger and halitosis (n.) (also nigger steak and a bad breath) [the brown colour of liver + the effect of (raw) onions on the breath]

(US) liver and onions.

[US]Berrey & Van den Bark Amer. Thes. Sl. (2nd edn) 95: nigger and halitosis, nigger steak and a bad breath, liver and onions.
[US]Maledicta III:2 168: nigger and halitosis n Liver and onions.
nigger baby (n.)

1. (US) a cannon-ball [coined by Confederate General Hardee (1815–73) during the siege of Charleston; the cannons from which the missiles were fired were known as swamp angels].

[US]Schele De Vere Americanisms 117: Among the cant words produced by the late Civil War, nigger babies also became very popular; the term originated with the veterans serving under the Confederate General Hardee, who gave that name to the enormous projectiles thrown into the city of Charleston by the Swamp Angel of General Gilmore, as his monster-gun in the swamps was ironically called.
[US]Maledicta III:2 168: nigger babyn [...] 2: Large cannon ball, Civil War.

2. (US) a small liquorice or chocolate sweet or candy shaped like a baby.

[US]Monroe & Northup ‘College Words and Phrases’ in DN II:iii 144: nigger-baby, n. Same as roly-poly.
Collier’s Mag. 47 5: It is my habit to carry in my pocket about a pound of little licorice nigger babies, known to the trade as ‘Senegambian Kids’ — ten for a cent.
[US]‘J.M. Hall’ Anecdota Americana II 8: A little girl was in the habit of buying chocolate nigger babies every day at the local candy store.
B & S Spewack Spring Song 85: GIRL: gimme two licorice straps... (TILLIE waits.) No, gimme the nigger babies. TILLIE. I’ll give you half nigger babies and half licorice strap... All right?
[US]G. Legman Rationale of the Dirty Joke (1972) I 155: Explicit penis-envy is very common in jokes. A little girl demands ‘boy candies’ in buying chocolate ‘nigger-babies,’ because she gets more that way.
[US]Maledicta III:2 168: nigger baby n [...] 3: [DA 1948] Candy.
[US](con. 1933) G. Pelecanos Big Blowdown (1999) 17: ‘Get me some Nigger Babies,’ yelled Boyle.
(con. 1959) M. Taylor Foreplay 28: ‘Ten cents worth of nigger babies, please.’ The man with the cigarettes [...] jerked around. ‘What did you say?’ he asked [...] All I wanted was ten cents worth of those little black licorice babies that melted so deliciously in my mouth.
nigger bait (n.)

an excess of chrome accessories on an automobile.

[US]Western Folklore XXI 33: Nigger bait— (excess) chrome on an automobile. Cf. ‘Jigaboo joy shop’.
[US]Maledicta III:2 168: nigger baitn [Cray 1960] Excessive chrome on an automobile.
nigger ball (n.) [SE ball, i.e. the colour and shape]

(S.Afr.) a large, round, black aniseed flavoured sweet, which gradually changes as one sucks away successive layers.

[UK] J. Taylor ‘Ballad of the Southern Suburbs’ [lyrics] Ag Daddy how we miss Niggerballs and liquorice, Pepsi-cola, ginger-beer and Canada Dry.
[SA]S. Roberts Outside Life’s Feast 7: Nigger-balls are the best sweets [...] When the black is sucked off you get pink and blue and blue-green, but you can’t bite them until you’ve sucked them small or you’ll chip your teeth [DSAE].
[SA]in Sun. Times (Johannesburg) 2 Jan. (Lifestyle) 5: She cheers up a bit when we stop at the Greek caffie on the corner and buy some nigger balls for her from the machine [DSAE].
[SA]Mail and Guardian (Johannesburg) 30 Apr. [Internet] We used to eat little black sweets we referred to as amagunqu in the Transkei, but at this new school they were called niggerballs.
nigger catcher (n.) [captured runaway slaves were roped to this flap and forced to run home alongside their master on his horse]

(US) a small slotted flap on a saddle.

[US]Maledicta III:2 169: nigger catcher n 1: Small, slotted leather flap on a saddle.
nigger chaser (n.)

(US) a firework that once lit leaps around along the ground [in UK, a jumping jack].

[US]G.W. Peck Peck’s Bad Boy and His Pa (1887) 22: I bought a dandy lot of fireworks [...] a lot of rockets and Roman candles, and six pin-wheels, and a lot of nigger chasers. [Ibid.] 23: A nigger-chaser got after Ma and treed her on top of the sofa.
[US]Eve. Star (Wash., DC) 24 Dec. 15/5: Marse John sot off dat bunch er nigger-chasers [...] wun ob dem firey debbils tuck atter me, an’ I ’gun hop light an’ hop long.
C.A. Adams Pete’s Devils 171: The purchase of what we called ‘nigger chaser’ fireworks that, under combustion, went here and there and everywhere.
Annual Report of the Ohio State Fire Marshal 10-13 119: In every city, village and hamlet there may be a patriotic celebration of the day; one in which the ladies may participate without danger from the ‘cannon cracker’ the nigger chaser and the torpedo.
[US]C.E. Mulford Bar-20 Three 217: Most likely they’ll be nigger-chasers, th’ way some folk’ll be steppin’ lively to get out of th’ way .
Pacific Motor Boat Mag. 31 61: Things spread like a nigger-chaser at a Fourth of July celebration.
H.E. Hartney Up & At ’Em 166: [It] let loose a ball of fire which ‘corkscrewed’ through the air in ever widening circles, much like the "Nigger Chaser" of Fourth of July fame.
Mexican Life 38 25: I have observed a curious predilection of the Mexican of the people for fireworks, mainly for the rocket and the nigger chaser.
[US]Maledicta III:2 169: nigger chaser n [DA 1883] Small firework that scurries about on the ground.
nigger day (n.) [the one day of rest permitted to slaves]

(US) Saturday.

[US]Maledicta III:2 169: nigger day n Saturday; from the alleged habit of Negroes getting drunk on Saturday night.
nigger daytime (n.) [the time at which slaves were allowed their rest]

(US) night time.

J. Davis Travels in the USA 385: Negur day-time* [*a cant term among the negroes for night; they being then at leisure].
[US]Maledicta III:2 169: nigger daytime n Night; so called because that is when slaves had their rest.
nigger dick (n.) [dick n.1 (5); the shape and colour]

(US black) a large cigar.

[US]Ebonics Primer at www.dolemite.com [Internet] nigger dick Definition: a fat cigar Example: Damn I seen dat puff of smoke and dar you was chiefin that nigger-dick.
nigger driver (n.)

see separate entry.

nigger-drunk (adj.)

(US) very drunk.

[[US]N.Y. Eve. Post 27 Feb. n.p.: For a number of years, I have been what is called a moderate drinker. I have never been right ‘negro drunk,’ though I have been pretty ‘swipey’].
S. Lamkin Tiger in the Garden 60: Just tell me why you have to go and get nigger-drunk every night. Why is it, Percy?
R. Marshall Bixby Girls 23: ‘You’ll git nigger drunk.’ ‘I’ll git white folks drunk’.
L.L. King Confessions of White Racist 85: We caught your college-boy nigger drunk in one of them joints.
[US]Maledicta III:2 169: nigger drunk adj Extremely drunk.
W. Demby Love Story Black 113: Let’s go up to Harlem and eat some greasy food, and listen to some funky music and get stinking nigger drunk.
nigger fishing (n.) [the implication is of the lazy black fisherman]

(US) leisurely fishing (orig. for for catfish or carp).

Forest & Stream 74 826: We poled further up into the river, anchored the canoe under the overhanging bluff and tried ‘nigger fishing’ with floats and sinkers.
Amer. Angler IV 271/1: I have a friend with whom I have often camped in faraway places who refers to this kind of angling as ‘nigger fishing.’.
Review of Reviews LXXXIX-XC 44: Sportsmen of a sort expect a hundred dollars’ worth of fish and game, in return for one-dollar license. Even fly casters and devotees of ‘nigger fishing’.
P. Cooper Navy Nurse 83: The sailors lolled on the back of the ship, ‘nigger fishing’ with a banana or a piece of dead fish on the line.
J.R. Rayford Whistlin’ Woman and Crowin’ Hen 170: So we come back in from the Gulf around to West Point, there on Dauphin Island, and we let the party do some nigger fishing.
[US]K. Porter ‘Still More Ethnic and Place names as Derisive Adjectives’ Western Folklore XXV:1 39: Nigger fishing. Fishing in a pond, slough, or sluggish stream [...] for catfish, carp, and other ‘coarse’ fish [...] Eugene, Ore., late 1950’s.
[US]Maledicta III:2 169: nigger fishing n [Porter late 1950s] Leisurely fishing for catfish or carp.
W. Percy Thanatos Syndrome 63: How about just nigger-fishing with worms?
nigger flicker (n.) [SE flick knife]

(US black) a weapon, usu. a small knife or a razor blade with one side heavily taped to preserve the user’s fingers.

[US]E. Folb Runnin’ Down Some Lines 248: nigger flicker 1. Small knife. 2. Razor blade with one side heavily taped (used as a weapon).
[US]R.C. Cruz Straight Outta Compton 84: He’s got a nigger flicker inside the elastic trim on his white briefs.
R. Sukenick In the Slipstream 396: The murder weapon was a nigger flicker.
nigger gin (n.)

(US) inferior or synthetic gin.

[US]Daily Globe (St Paul, MN) 15 Apr. 1/6: The prisoner does the heel and toe racket in the dago dives, receiving all the nigger gin he can guzzle as compensation.
[US]Wash. Critic (DC) 19 Sept. 1/1: Five cent whiskey and nigger gin are sold in the neighborhood.
Wash. Bee (DC) 6 Aug. 4/1: There are certain grog-shops who keep what they call ‘nigger gin’ for the colored people.
[US]Alliance Herald (Box Butte Co., NE) 7 Nov. 5/3: Every drink ‘nigger gin’? It’s made of turpentine, rainwater and Orlerans sugar.
[US]Hawaiian Gaz. (HI) 1 July 4/2: The manufacture and exploitation of what is commonly kniown in the South as ‘nigger gin’.
H. Ford International Jew 27: It turned out that the maker of a brand of ‘nigger gin’ which had spurred certain Negroes on to the nameless crime, was one Lee Levy.
[US]C. Sandburg ‘Alice B.’ in Amer. Songbag 29: One night I went out, got filled with nigger gin.
[US]A. Hardin ‘Volstead Eng.’ in AS VII:2 87: Terms used for intoxicating liquor: Nigger gin.
[US]Monteleone Criminal Sl. (rev. edn).
[US]Maledicta III:2 169: nigger gin n Synthetic gin.
T.J. McCoy ‘Alakali Pete Hits Town’ in Cannon Cowboy Poetry 19: I was suckled by a grizzly and was weaned on nigger gin.
nigger golf (n.)

(US) the game of craps.

Catering Industry Employee 27 53: He was more concerned in playing ‘Nigger Golf’ during his residence in New Orleans than he was in the future of the beverage industry.
[US]Mt Sterling Advocate (KY) 22 Dec. 7/3: It may not be as fast as trench poker [...] or as rapid as that ‘nigger golf’ we used to play.
Judge LXXXII 22: They didn’t have our ‘nigger golf,’ they had no poker game.
‘The Mixer’ Transport Workers’ Song Bk XXVII 53: Therefore, the conclusion, that whoever he may be, as likely as not he was more concerned in playing ‘Nigger Golf’.
niggergram (n.) (also nigger-mouth) [SE (tele)gram/sfx -mouth]

(W.I.) a stupid rumour, demeaning gossip.

[WI]V.S. Naipaul A House For Mr Biswas 536: I don’t know where you get the niggergram from. I am not leaving. You leaving.
R. Patin Days of Wrath [ebook] From the gunmen [...] there was almost a running commentary, a grapevine, a constant up-to-date ‘niggergram,’ to use the Trinidad word, on events at the Red House.
niggerhead (n.)

see separate entries.

nigger heads (n.) [SE head, alleged resemblance]

(US prison) prison-cooked prunes.

[US]Goldin et al. DAUL 145/1: Nigger heads. (N. Y. Catholic Protectory) Prunes.
nigger heaven (n.) (also nigger gallery)

1. (US) the top gallery of a theatre; cites 1880, 1906 refers to a church [this gallery was the only one that black theatregoers could afford/were allowed].

[US]Uncle Sam Peculiarities II 99: The ‘nigger gallery’—the only party of an American theatre where men with the slightest tinge of African blood can be admitted [DA].
G.M. Towle American Soc. 2 16: The [highest gallery] is sometimes jocosely called — from the fact that negro spectators were formerly limited to this gallery — the ‘nigger heaven,’ or, Latinised, ‘coelum Africanum’.
[US]Daly in J.F. Daly A. Daly 249: There is a ‘Nigger Heaven’ (as the third tier is called in Troy) here, & as ’tis capacious I have been liberal with my pencilled passes [DA].
Potter’s American Monthly 15 7: No; he would not sit in the ‘nigger heaven’ on Sundays, and, as they would not admit him to the white pews below, he would stand at the door of the audience room during the entire service.
Locomotive Engineers’ Jrnl 22 1078: From parquet to balcony, from pit to dome, from stage to ‘Nigger Heaven’ was an unbroken mass of human faces.
‘Mark Twain’ Those Extraordinary Twins viii 420: It usurped the place of pious thought in the ‘nigger gallery’ .
[US]E.H. Babbitt ‘College Words and Phrases’ in DN II:i 47: nigger-heaven, n. Topmost gallery of a theatre.
[US]Perrysburg Jrnl (OH) 8 June 6/3: he attended church [...] but didn’t sit in the ‘Niggers’ Gallery.
Norfolk Wkly (NE) 25 Jan. 6/2: Two balconies are the rule [...] the second and top being what is known as the ‘niggers’ gallery’ and the goal of the riff-raff.
[US]Day Book (Chicago) 14 Apr. 22/2: We went to the theater and sat up in what they call the ‘peanut gallery’, ‘nigger’s heaven,’ etc.
[US]Sun (NY) 17 Jan. 6/5: It [i.e. a theatre] was remodelled [...] the fourth gallery or ‘nigger heaven’ was removed.
H.A. Franck Working North From Patagonia 356: I wandered up the dingy back stairs to the gallhinheiro (chickenroost), as ‘nigger heaven’ is called in Brazil.
[US]‘Dean Stiff’ Milk and Honey Route 151: They have raised their prices beyond the reach of the hobo, unless he wants to go to ‘nigger heaven’.
[US]Mencken ‘Designations for Colored Folk’ in AS XIX:3 169: nigger-heaven (the top gallery in a theatre) to 1878.
[US]Maledicta III:2 169: nigger gallery n [DA 1844] Section of a theater reserved for Negroes.

2. (US) a state of enjoyment that is derived from vulgar activities.

[US]J.W. Carr ‘Words from Northwest Arkansas’ in DN III:ii 148: nigger heaven, n. In the verb phrase, ‘to be in nigger-heaven’ i.e., to enjoy one’s self cheaply and vulgarly. ‘He’s in nigger-heaven now.’.

3. a black neighbourhood.

McBride’s Mag. 42 109: Never till I saw these opulent creatures, gloved, cologned, oiled, ribboned, and starched, did I realize that I had indeed climbed from Murray Hill to a sphere known to proletarian speech as Nigger Heaven.
[US]S. Graham N.Y. Nights 34: Nigger Heaven, away up in the hundred-and-thirties, begins to dim its stars.
[Aus]West. Argus (Kalgoorlie) 10 July 7/1: The curious name of ‘Nigger Heaven’ is givn by the people of New York to the Harlem district where all its negroes have congregated.

In compounds

nigger jockey (n.) [jockey n.2 (3b)]

(US black) a slave trader.

[US]T.C. Haliburton Clockmaker 32: It takes more skill yet to be a nigger-jockey. A nigger-jockey, said he; for heaven’s sake, what is that ? I never heerd the term afore, since I was a created sinner — I hope I may be shot if I did. [...] A nigger-jockey, sir, says I, is a gentleman that trades in niggers, — buys them in one state, and sells them in another, where they arn’t known. It’s a beautiful science, is nigger flesh .
nigger joint (n.) [joint n. (3b)]

(US) a cheap bar, saloon or restaurant.

[US]Omaha Dly Bee (NE) 5 June 1/6: Both women are colored and lived [...] in a ‘tough nigger joint’ as the police say.
[US]Eve. World (NY) 24 Aug. 10/5: We waltzed him into a saloon, which turned out to be a nigger joint.
US Senate: Hearings Before Committee on Military Affairs 2503: Now, it was after he had started up, of course, before Billingsley came in to know who had started the nigger joint.
Van Vechten Daybooks 45: Mencken, 9 PM, came in to sign books, also Boyd [...] and [...] we went to a nigger joint in Harlem with Eddie Knoblauch.
[US]H. Miller Tropic of Cancer (1987) 220: He would insist that I accompany him to a dancing. He was fond of going to a nigger joint .
C. Himes If He Hollers Let Him Go (2002) 76: ‘Let’s get out this nigger joint.’ I don’t think he meant to say it, but after he’d said it he got defiant.
US Senate: Labor Practices in Laurens County, Ga 29: Then I asked him, ‘What are you doing here in this nigger joint, this bootleg joint?’.
P.F. Healy Cissy 100: Then we went on to a nigger joint, all American coons— singing their heads off too.
G. Jones White Rat 11: It weren’t no nigger joint neither, it was a hoogie joint.
E. Leonard Unknown Man #89 (2002) 139: He hadn’t found a good place to eat other than a nigger joint he happened to go into. They had collards and okra.
W.J. Caunitz Pigtown 72: De’re gonna be in a nigger joint named Dreamland, on Nostrand Avenue.
nigger juke (n.) (also nigger jook ) [juke n.1 (1)]

(US) a cheap bar, saloon or restaurant.

[US]Scribner’s Mag. C 27/2: Jim’s daddy owned the General Store and a nigger jook and a row of shanties in the Quarters.
[US]Maledicta III:2 170: nigger jook; nigger juken [DA 1936] Lowclass bar or restaurant.
J.W. Layne Frank Testimony 88: It’s a nigger’s juke, all them blues vagrants’ plays music in there.
nigger kickers (n.) (also nigger stompers) [SE kick/stomp]

(US) large boots.

[US] oral testimony in Lighter HDAS 663: Nigger-stompers are any kind of big boots, like with pointed toes. I heard it in New York City in the early ’60’s.
[US](con. 1969) S. Terkel Great Divide 281: I had just bought these big boots for mountain climbing [...] This student who as friendly to me looked down at them and said, ‘Oh, you got your nigger-kickers on’.
M.S. Sternglass Reading, Writing & Reasoning 323: This student who was friendly to me looked down at them and said, ‘Oh, you got your nigger-kickers on’.
J. King Football Factory 140: Jurgen stopped, pointed to his DMs, and called them nigger kickers.
nigger killer (n.) (also nigger choker)

1. (US) a yam or sweet potato [the supposed results of over-eating them].

[US]H. Davis Farm Bk 140: Planted out in rows 7 bushels of Spanish potatoes & in the bed 10 Spanish—5 Negro killers & 23 of Yams [DA].
[US]Waco Dly Examiner (TX) 15 Nov. 2/1: Smshing big potatoes called ‘Pink Yam,’ and ‘Nigger Killer’.
Bulletin Agric. Experiment Station (NC State U.) 104: ‘African Reds,’ ‘Black Spanish’ and ‘Nigger Killer’ are also synonyms.
[US]Fort Worth Gaz. (TX) 19 Apr. 4/1: ‘Nigger-Killer Potatoes’ I have noticed in The Gazette an inquiry as to where the ‘nigger-killer’ sweet potatoes could be had.
Chipley Banner (FL) 13 May 3/3: He had a ‘pone’ of cornbread and a ‘nigger’ killer potato in his pocket.
J. Fitz Sweet Potato Culture 63: Other well-known sorts are ‘Hayti Yam’ or ‘Musgrove;’ [the] ‘Nigger Killer’.
[US]J. Massey Reminiscences 22: Yams, Spanish, white and red (called ‘nigger killers’) potatoes were grown in abundance and put up in banks for winter use .
Hand & Cockeram Sweet Potato 132: Nigger Killer. — The Nigger Killer, or Nigger Choker, has a purplish red skin [etc.].
[US]Mencken ‘Designations for Colored Folk’ in AS XIX:3 169: nigger-killer to 1856.
[US]Maledicta III:2 170: nigger killer n 1: [DA 1885] Yams.

2. as a weapon.

(a) a slingshot.

[US]Daily Phoenix (Columbia, SC) 7 Mar. 2/3: The urchin [...] had been making a target of him by shooting at him with a ‘nigger killer’.
[US]Wichita Eagle (KS) 22 May 4/2: We would have to dodge [...] the boys with nigger-killers.
Crittenden Press (Marion, KY) 22 June 3/6: Whoever shall [...] throw a stone, shoot an arrow, dart, ‘nigger killer’ [...] shall be fined.
[US]Madison Jrnl (LA) 9 Aug. 3/2: One man made an Egyptian nigger-killer with rubber bands.
[US]W.E. Wilson Wabash 318: The Wabash is [...] barefoot boys on country roads, with nigger-killers dangling from the pockets of their overalls and strings of ‘yeller catfish’ slung over their shoulders.
[US]Maledicta III:2 170: nigger killer n [...] 3: [DA 1940] Slingshot.

(b) a revolver.

T.D. Clark Pills, Petticoats and Plows 130: This gun was popularly known to the trade as a ‘nigger killer,’ and it was said that it fired a standard short thirty-two caliber bullet sidewise .
[US]Maledicta III:2 170: nigger killer n [...] 4: [DA 1944] Revolver.

(c) a large pocket-knife.

[US] in DARE III 797/2: A large pocket knife with blades that fold in and out [...] Nigger jigger; [...] Nigger killer; [...] Nigger sticker.
S. Kennedy Klan Unmasked 14: Soon the table was covered with an assortment of pistols, switch-blade ‘nigger-killer’ knives, blackjacks, brassknucks [etc.].
nigger knocker (n.) (also nigger-beater)

(US) a stick or club; as often used against blacks.

[US]Newsweek 66 18: Among some LA cops, a billy club is familiarly known as a ‘nigger knocker’.
S. Crump Black Riot in L.A. 29: In the Black Ghetto officers refer to a billy club as a ‘nigger knocker’.
H. Rowan Structured Crowd 38: Among some Los Angeles policemen, a truncheon was familiarly known as a ‘nigger knocker’.
A. Peck Uncovering the Sixties 26: Then fast-spreading rumors and decades of racism pitted teenagers screaming ‘burn, baby, burn’ against cops wielding ‘nigger-knocker’ nightsticks.
[US](con. 1940s) J. Ellroy Black Dahlia Prologue [Internet] Every Central Division patrolman was called in to duty, then issued a World War I tin hat and an oversize billy club known as a nigger knocker.
[US]P. Beatty White Boy Shuffle 11: Threateing the entire British empire with his wooden nigger-beater.
TOM101 Inmate Story Book 10 Aug. [Internet] I came back with my nigger knocker. It a solid brass pole about 2 1/2 feet long, about as big around as the average dick, and weigh almost 4 pounds. On one end it has a handle bar grip off a bicycles. That’s the end I hold. The other end, which I call the business end was dipped in melted lead and then rolled it in broken glass.
N. Stamper Breaking Rank 94: ‘Take your nigger-knocker with you.’ I [...] slipped my baton into its ring, and peered through the passenger window.
niggerlip (v.)

1. to moisten the end of a cigarette while smoking it.

[US] ‘Smokers’ Sl.’ in AS XV:3 Oct. 335/2: To moisten the tip of one’s cigaret is to niggerlip.
[US]T. Capote Breakfast at Tiffany’s 35: You’re such a slob. You always nigger-lip.
[US](con. 1950s) H. Junker ‘The Fifties’ in Eisen Age of Rock 2 (1970) 99: Niggerlipping didn’t seem such a terrible way to describe wetting the end of a cigarette.
[US]Maledicta III:2 170: nigger-lip vi Moisten the tip of one’s cigarette.
[US]R. Price Breaks 42: He nigger-lipped his cigarettes.
[US]Eble Campus Sl. Oct. 5: niggerlip – wet the end of a cigarette and ruin it.

2. to slobber on a bottleneck or can when drinking straight from the container.

[US]W.T. Vollmann Royal Family 743: You think I want to drink out of any can you’ve nigger-lipped?
nigger liquor (n.)

(US) any form of bad liquor, esp. when illicitly distilled.

J. Ross They Don’t Dance Much 8: I wasn’t crazy about tackling that nigger liquor. They cut it with water and then give it kick with some sort of tablets. Sometimes it runs folks crazy.
R. Andrews Baby’s Sweet 41: [...] curious about why the white boy in the Model-B was still parked at the curb after buying his Saturday-night nigger liquor.
[US]B. Bilger Noodling for Flatheads (2001) 100: There have always been two sorts of moonshine: the decent stuff, which is kept at home and sold to neighbors, and ‘nigger likker,’ [...] shipped to anonymous shot houses and nip joints in the big city.
nigger logic (n.) [the black person stereotyped as child-like and simple]

(US) any form of reasoning considered erroneous, over-simplistic, based in fantasy, i.e. totally illogical.

Ohio Archæological and Historical Quarterly II 499: Paul delighted to indulge in what he termed, ‘Nigger logic,’ that is, he would make a ridiculous, impromptu oration.
R.E. Day Rhapsody in Black 65: ‘Listen,’ said the Justice sarcastically, ‘you’ll hear some nigger logic.’ The crowd roared with laughter.
[US]Maledicta II:1+2 (Summer/Winter) 165: Nigger logic An inferior, erroneous, overly simplistic or absurdly convoluted form of reasoning.
nigger-lover (n.)

see separate entry.

nigger luck (n.) (US)

1. good luck, the implication is of unfairness.

[US] in R. Glisan Journal Army Life (1874) 90: I occasionally made him a little envious by my nigger-luck, as he is pleased to term it.
[US]B. Harte Luck of Roaring Camp (1873) 31: When a man gets a streak of luck, – nigger-luck, – he don’t get tired. The luck gives in first.
[UK]J.H. Carter ‘The Unreconstructed’ in Log of Commodore Rollingpin 207: ’Twas ‘nigger’ luck that beat him, and ‘wan’t’ done upon the square.
[UK]Critic 14 Apr. n.p.: I am cussed [...] if any darned rebel can have such nigger luck and enjoy it while I live [F&H].
[US]J.F. Lillard Poker Stories 74: The son began to lay in ‘nigger luck’. He held surprising hands.
[US]S.F. Call 26 May 7/2: He found that gold in openin’ those irrigatin’ trenches - the usual nigger luck.
[US]Mt Sterling Advocate (KY) 4 Nov. 7/4: When a man gets a streak of luck - nigger luck - he don’t get tired.
[US]H. Asbury Sucker’s Progress 206: Not for a long time did the gamblers learn that the tunes were signals, or realize that the pseudo-backwoodsman always had a streak of ‘Nigger-luck’ when Pappy started to fiddle.
[US]Mencken ‘Designations for Colored Folk’ in AS XIX:3 169: nigger-luck (meaning good luck) to 1851.
[US]W.A. Chalfant Gold, Guns, and Ghost Towns 7: Mac told them their judgment was ‘free nigger luck, that and nothing more’ [DA].

2. bad luck, which one must make the best of, come what may.

[US](con. 1944) N. Mailer Naked and Dead 428: Get wound, okay means get killed, only wounded. Goddam nigger luck.
nigger-meat (n.) [meat n. (1)]

a white woman who associates with black men.

[UK]R. Hewitt White Talk Black Talk 24: ‘She goes to your school, don’t she, Mick?’ ‘Yes. Nigger-meat.’ [...] ‘They’re fuckin’ labelled ... Not many white people want to know them ... “nigger-meat”, you know. Well, it’s treason, isn’t it?’.
nigger mess (n.)

(US black) problems within the black community, which should be solved within that group.

Negro Hist. Bulletin 82/3: But when the group, after the way of all good Baptists, got into what my grandfather called a ‘nigger mess’ and split the church, he withdrew from both .
H. James All the Forgotten Places 278: He hated Mayor Swint, who habitually ridiculed the maneuverings of the black officeholders as ‘nothing but a nigger mess’.
C. Himes Plan B 47: In the end it was this train of thought that dispelled all their budding alarms: whichever way you looked at it, it wasn’t anything but a nigger mess.
(con. 1960s) P. de Lissovoy ‘Returning to Georgia’ on ReportingCivilRights.org [Internet] When he returned to his job at a grocery, hearing the bossman curse that ‘nigger mess’ of a Movement was no longer tolerable.
nigger news (n.)

(US) gossip; not necessarily about or from black people.

J.D. Long Pictures of Slavery 75: It is considered dishonorable for persons to break friendship on what is called ‘nigger news’ .
[US] in N.E. Eliason Tarheel Talk (1956) 285: The family . . . depend on Is [...] to supply me with the latest nigger news.
[US]Century Mag. 43 775: Old Aunt Viney told Uncle Ned — though I am not one to pay any attention to nigger news in general — that [etc.] .
J.A. Price Negro 166: He will often go to a neighbor and relate the most damaging stories concerning the family of his benefactor. We call this ‘nigger news,’ and give it very little credence.
Waggles:Dog Stories 22: Nigger news doesn't need to be toted — it simply permeates and pervades.
H. Dickson Old Reliable in Africa 245: Lordee, Cunnel, I never pays no ’tention to nigger news.
[US]Wilson Collection n.p.: Nigger news. . . Gossip, scuttlebutt, just such news as a servant might hint to her employer [DARE].
nigger night (n.)

(US black) Saturday night.

[US]Ruppenthal Collection n.p.: Nigger night. . . Saturday night [DARE].
[US]A. Moody Coming of Age Mississippi 261: Yes, Saturday night is Nigger Night all over Mississippi.
nigger pancake (n.) [SE pancake; alleged resemblance]

(US) a lump of manure.

[US] in DARE.
nigger pool (n.)

(US) a derog. name for numbers, the n. (1)

Atlantic Reporter CLXXXII 203: Count 1 of the complaint charges that respondent ‘a lottery ticket, to wit, a ticket commonly known as a nigger pool ticket, did sell to one Robert Sullivan’.
[US](con. early 1930s) C. McKay Harlem Glory (1990) 15: White residents avidly started playing the thing they had formerly contemptuously referred to as ‘the nigger pool’.
G. Chambers Last Man Standing 53: The nigger pool, the number of the day, how she played her husband’s birthday, the due date of her baby.
(ref. to 1920s) S. Raab Five Families 47: The racist gangsters derisively regarded numbers as ‘the nigger pool.’ But tens of thousands of New Yorkers played the numbers games that paid 600-to-1.
H. Carr Hard Knocks 199: The daily number, which was known as ‘nigger pool’ because of its popularity in the black neighborhoods. But nigger pool was a huge racket across the entire city.
nigger pot (n.)

(US, mainly Southern) illicitly distilled whisky.

[US]T. Southern ‘Twirling at Ole Miss’ in Southern (1973) 134: ‘Unless, of course, you’d like to try some “nigger-pot”.’ [...] It soon developed, of course, that what he was talking about was the unaged and uncolored corn whiskey privately made in the region, and also known as ‘white lightning’.
[US]Maledicta III:2 170: nigger-pot n Moonshine alcohol, some Southern usage.
(ref. to 1960s) Dickerson & Alston Devil’s Sanctuary 84: Unless he had been rendered deaf by moonshine—or, as it was called in those days, ‘nigger pot’—he must have heard every elected official in the state encouraging resistance.
nigger-rich (adj.)

(US) very poor or deeply in debt but loaded down with flashy material status symbols.

Leather Workers’ Jrnl 15-16 375: Of course we are not wealthy, could not expect to be after having a strike on our hands for the past four years, but we nigger rich.
Coal & Trade Jrnl 771/1: Two days’ work gives the miner more money than he ever saw in a week before, and three days makes him ‘nigger rich’.
[US]Sat. Eve. Post 200 128: Mr. Blanding may think he’s rich, but I’m richer than he is. I’m nigger rich! I’ve got all the money I need for today.
[US]‘Goat’ Laven Rough Stuff 4: We got fifteen dollars so we were ‘nigger’ rich, and we went to an amusement park and spent it all.
[US]E. Hemingway letter 14 Apr. in Baker Sel. Letters (1981) 584: Don’t tell him so he won’t get nigger rich.
[UK]J. Curtis Look Long Upon a Monkey 76: He’d had a whale of a time, [...] flashing money about, nigger-rich, and the wide boys had spotted him, coshed him and rolled him for his poke.
[US]N. Heard Howard Street 118: What they managed to keep for themselves made them rich, or, as Third Ward people said, ‘nigger-rich’.
[US]D. Goines Dopefiend (1991) 180: I’ll make so much money off it, we’ll be nigger rich.
[US]J.L. Gwaltney Drylongso 39: His neighbors defensively dismissed him as [...] ‘vain’ and ‘nigger-rich’.
J. Lamar Last Integrationist 183: ‘We nigger-rich. Just nigger-rich.’ Still, they had enough money to move out of the projects and into a neat little row house.
[US]‘Touré’ Portable Promised Land (ms.) 7: Huggy Bear was what your momma would call ‘nigga-rich’. Someone with, say, a multi-thousand-dollar neck chain and nothing in the bank.
[US]P. Beatty Sellout (2016) 281: The nigger rich trio, now dressed in top hat and tails at all times.
nigger-rig(ged)

see separate entries.

nigger rigger (n.) [? nigger rig v.]

(US prison) a white inmate who is seen as overly friend to black ones.

[US]J. Ellroy Silent Terror (1990) 67: Do not seek the friendship of blacks, or you would be considered a ‘nigger rigger’.
nigger row (n.)

1. (US) the black area of a town or city.

[US]Sun (NY) 16 Feb. 1/3: There was a woman in Nigger row, Rochester avenue [...] in a destitute condition. The room belonged to a colored man.
[US]Daily Globe (St Paul, MN) 4 Dec. 5/4: A double frame house on West Fifty-fourth Street, know as ‘Nigger-row’ [...] was burned this evening.
[US]N.Y. Tribune 16 Sept. 5/3: ‘Nigger Row° had a small-sized riot on Friday night. ‘Nigger Row’ is in Ninety-Seventh Street [...] The people who live there are [...] negroes.
[US]J.A. Riis Battle with the Slum 111: The local street nomenclature, in which the directory has no hand,—Nigger Row, Mixed Ale Flats, etc.,—indicates the hostile camps with unerring accuracy.
J. Lane Yellow Men Sleep 95: Con thought of Memphis, of the wooden barrier, and poignantly wondered if here was the answer to his dreams in Nigger Row.
[US]Amer. Mercury 161/1: He turned sharp off the square, down Nigger Row to Sonny Barger’s store.
[US](ref. to 1890s) G. Osofsky Harlem 84: Forty-sixth Street had ‘a large colony of the poorest colored people’ in the 1890’s, and was popularly known by the choice epithet ‘Nigger Row’.
M.E. McGerr Fierce Discontent 191: ‘Buzzard’s Alley,’ ‘Bronzeville,’ ‘Nigger Row,’ ‘Chinch Row,’ or ‘Black Bottom.’ Typically, these neighborhoods had poor housing.

2. the black wing in the Tombs Prison, NYC.

[US]Eve. World (NY) 9 June 3/4: She is a prisoner in ‘Nigger Row’ but she is the most luxurious prisoner ‘Nigger Row’ has ever known [...] in the Tombs.
nigger’s bankroll (n.) (also nigger bankroll, ...roll) [SE bankroll/roll n.; thus negative stereotyping]

(US) a roll of $1 bills or a wad of small denomination notes inside one larger denomination note.

[US]M.A. Gill Und. Sl. n.p.: Nigger bank roll – Roll of one dollar bills.
[US]Monteleone Criminal Sl. (rev. edn) 163: nigger roll A roll of dollar bills.
[US]E. Folb Runnin’ Down Some Lines 112: A phony bankroll — a wad of money with a maybe large bill on top and a few singles in the middle (and sometimes paper on the bottom) — is variously called a California bankroll, a nigger’s bankroll or a Chicago bankroll.
niggers’ duel (n.)

(US) an argument, a set-to in which no blows are actually struck.

[UK]J. Ware Passing Eng. of the Victorian Era 182/1: Niggers’ duel (Anglo-American). A never-intended encounter. Each behind a mile-stone, therefore a mile apart.
nigger shooter (n.) (also nigger-trigger)

(US) a slingshot.

[US]Ouachita Teleg. (Monroe, LA) 14 Dec. 2/3: An ordinabce to [...] prevent within the city limits the use or shooting of any nigger-shooters.
[US]Cheyenne Transporter (Darlington, Indian terr.) 26 Dec. 9/3: A nigger-shooter, which is a rubber catapult for propelling pebbles.
[US]Sweet & Knox On a Mexican Mustang, Through Texas 339: Just about the time people have got used to tops buzzing about their ears, the ‘nigger-shooter’ mania breaks out.
[US]Shiner Gaz. (TX) 10 Feb. 8/4: The town oprdinance in regard to ‘Nigger Shooters’ will be rigidly enforced and all boys caught violating this oprdinance will be prosecuted.
[US]Ade Forty Modern Fables 172: All you wanted to do was tear out with those Toughs and kill Birds with Nigger-Shooters.
Graham Guardian (Stafford, AZ) 25 May 1/6: Boys and young men indulging in the practice of shooting air guns [...] and nigger shooters.
Herald (New Orleans) 1 Jan. 12/2: Shot a cat with my nigger shooter.
[US]E. Anderson Thieves Like Us (1999) 22: You can do it with a nigger-shooter.
[US]M. James Cherokee Strip 4: I was fishing in my pocket for the nigger-shooter Mr. Howell had made me [DA].
[US]E. Loomis Heroic Love 137: For power, a nigger-shooter just ain’t in it with a sling.
[US]I.L. Allen Lang. of Ethnic Conflict 48: Personality and Group Character: nigger-trigger [also niggershooter].
G. Spence Making of a Country Lawyer 38: A ‘nigger-shooter’ was made from a willow crotch in the form of a Y.
nigger steak (n.) [SE steak; it is particularly dark]

(US black) liver.

[US]Honolulu Star-Bulletin (HI) 25 Mar. 33/1: ‘Nigger steak’ is not a meal for cannibals but simply [...] liver.
[US] ‘C.C.C. Chatter’ in AS XV:2 Apr. 211/2: Common articles of food lose some of their sameness when given figurative names: [...] liver, nigger steak.
[US]Monteleone Criminal Sl. (rev. edn).
H. Carter Where Main Street Meets the River 183: The fathers of today’s black men and women, who had the temerity to seek to vote, had only yesterday eaten nigger steak for breakfast back in Africa.
nigger stick (n.)

(US) an oversized baton, used by policemen and prison officers.

Special Report (Sthn Regional Council92: One man had an axe handle with lead in the end of it which he called his ‘nigger stick’.
Novel observateur (France) 20 35: Le « nigger stick » Trois anciens prisonniers d'Attica m’ont décrit la vie dans une prison où les gardiens appelaient familièrement leur matraque le « nigger stick ».
P. Thomas Seven Long Times 72: A hack walked over to our table and pointed with a hard-ass reinforced club that I’d learn was called a ‘nigger stick,’ supposedly because it could stand against heads that were anything but white.
Reesa2334 ‘How to be an Assshole Part I’ Commoner’s Newsletter [Internet] You are a jackass who will go to hell and if she comes crying to me, then I will have to come looking for you and will beat you so hard with the nigger stick.
C. Sifakis Encyc. Amer. Prisons 179/1: That the prison officer’s club is the nigger stick rather clearly indicates against which types of prison inmates it is primarily used.
nigger sticker (n.)

a large pocket-knife.

[US] in DARE n.p.: A large pocket knife with blades that fold in and out [...] Nigger jigger; [...] Nigger killer; [...] Nigger sticker.
S. Goodwin Kin 99: He scowled constantly and tried to talk tough; he owned a pearl-handled switchblade which, of course, he called his nigger-sticker.
Fed. Reporter 2 ser. 976 1129: Detective Rago found a machete with a 15-inch blade inside a canvas sheath with the words ‘Nigger Sticker’ and ‘Get Out Go Back To Your Slums’ on it.
nigger talk (n.) [SE talk]

(US) chatter, irresponsible gossip.

[US]Columbia Phoenix (SC) 12 Apr. 2/3: It seems to be very like nigger talk in Yankee English.
Honolulu Repub. (HI) 12 Apr. 4/2: The ‘nigger talk’ and ignorance of the Lime Kiln Club.
[US]Dos Passos Manhattan Transfer 176: Stan you’re feeling your liquor, you’re beginning to talk niggertalk.
[US]S. Graham There Was Once a Slave 32: The white masters heard other whisperings too—vague, amusing ‘nigger talk’ [DA].
[US]Maledicta III:2 170: nigger talk n [DA 1866] Irresponsible, exaggerated gossip.
nigger toe (n.) [SE toe; alleged resemblance] (US)

1. a type of potato.

Michigan Agricultural Society Transcripts V 208: Some of the more approved [kinds of potatoes] are [...] the Niggertoe, the Meshannock, the Cumberland Kempt .
[US]Perrysburg Jrnl (OH) 24 Mar. 410/2: It is not stated whether they are the big English whites [..] pinkeyes, or nigger-toes.
[US]Mencken ‘Designations for Colored Folk’ in AS XIX:3 169: Niggertoe is a dialect name, in rural New York, Ohio and Pennsylvania, for a Brazil nut, and was once used to designate a variety of potato.
[US]Maledicta III:2 171: niggertoe n [...] 2: [DA 1853] Potato.

2. (also nigger-heel) a Brazil nut .

Mt Cook Tribune (NE) 24 Dec. 12/3: Nearly every one had found ‘nigger-toes’ and ‘Jackson balls’ in those same stockings Christmas morning.
Iola register (KS) 8 Dec. 4/4: [advt] Almonds, Brazils, Nigger Toes.
[US]S.F. Call 6 Dec. n.p.: We’ve ‘Nigger Toes’ and Hickories.
[US]J.W. Carr ‘Words from Northwest Arkansas’ in DN III:ii 148: nigger-heel, nigger-toe, n. Brazil nut.
[US]Tomahawk Border Co., MN) 4 Dec. 7/1: [advt] Brazil Nuts for Christmas [...] Everybody Calls Them Nigger Toes.
[US]Mencken ‘Designations for Colored Folk’ in AS XIX:3 169: Niggertoe is a dialect name, in rural New York, Ohio and Pennsylvania, for a Brazil nut.
[US]E.H. Paul Linden 337: There were special booths for sweet corn dipped in hot melted buttter [...] chestnuts, butternuts, nigger-toes, almonds and castanas [DA].
[US]D. Ponicsan Last Detail 78: There’s this nut I used to eat when I was a kid, we called a niggertoe [...] I wouldn’t go into a store today and say, gimme a bag of niggertoes.
[US]H. Rawson Dict. of Invective (1991) 270: No one of any refinement eats nigger toes (Brazil nuts) or nigger heels (hazel nuts) any more.
niggertown (n.)

see separate entry.

nigger war (n.)

(US, Southern) the US Civil War (1861–5).

R. Ingersoll speech in N.Y. in Works (1909) 144: They denounced the war as an abolition nigger war. They denounced Abraham Lincoln as a tyrant.
nigger work (n.)

(US) menial work; ill-performed work.

[US] in R.G. Carter Four Brothers in Blue (1978) 17 Jan. 222: The company is so small that it takes what few there are left to do guard duty and nigger work.
[US]St Louis Republican (MO) 2 Mar. 48/6: I fetches water, an he’ps rub hosses an’ speakin’ gen’ral, does more nigger work than I ever crosses up with.
[US]Hayti Herald (MO) 12 Feb. 8/1: One [...] took it upon himself openly to defy the officers, exclaiming profanely that he’d be d--d if he ever enlisted to do nigger work.
[US]M. Levin Citizens 140: First Will would yell the niggers had all the jobs, then he would spit at a job because it was nigger work.
[US]T. Berger Sneaky People (1980) 68: Maybe you like nigger work, but it’s not for me.
[UK]J. Mowry Six Out Seven (1994) 128: Corbitt good at carpentry as with anything he could do with his hands, and Toby doing the nigger-work.
[US]N. Green Angel of Montague Street (2004) 86: I’m sick of these nigger repair jobs [...] I’m not paying for nigger work.
nigger yard (n.) [Carib.E, negro-yard, that area on a plantation where the slaves were quartered]

(W.I.) any notably rough area in the slums.

[WI]cited in Allsopp Dict. Carib. Eng. Usage (1996).
showcase nigger (n.) (also showcase coon)

see sep. entry.

In phrases

act the nigger (v.)

(US black) to act in a manner white racists expect of black people, i.e. foolish, subservient, clownish.

[US]L.W. Payne Jr ‘Word-List From East Alabama’ in DN III:iv 285: act the nigger, v. phr. Do menial work, drudge. ‘I don’t perpose to act the nigger no longer.’.
[US]R. Ellison Invisible Man 143: I had to wait and plan and lick around . . . Yes, I had to act the nigger!
Roemer & Young Nothing But a Man [film script] Yeah, you want to get along, act the nigger.
[US]E. Folb Runnin’ Down Some Lines 27: The expressions act the nigger and show your color [...] generally mean to be foolish or silly, to call attention to yourself.
[US]N. McCall Makes Me Wanna Holler (1995) 12: Stop showing your color. Stop acting like a nigger!
big nigger (n.) [the blackness of the spade suit]

(US) in poker, a game in which the high spade splits the pot.

[US]Maledicta III:2 168: nigger, big n Poker game in which high spade splits the pot; from the importance of the spade suit in the game.
black nigger (n.)

(US black) a derog. term of address used by one black man to another.

[UK]Farmer Americanisms.
[US]C. McKay ‘Me Whoppin’ Big-Tree Boy’ Constab Ballads 49: How you sell wha’ no wut gill self to black naygur fur a bob; / But me eboe-light we’ sure talk, of dat you can have no doubt.
[US]C. Major Juba to Jive 39: Black nigger n. (1620s–1950s) term of abusive address by one ‘colored’ man to another.
dark as a nigger’s pocket (adj.)

see under dark adj.

get one’s nigger up (v.)

(US) to lose control, to lose one’s temper.

[US]J.D. Corrothers Black Cat Club 212: I got mad. Yes, indeed, got ma niggah up!
[US]C. Himes Pinktoes 29: It goes without saying that this allusion to her weakest charm would get Mamie’s nigger up, too, as they say in that part of the world, and she would retort with sweet acid bile.
I’m a nigger

see separate entry.

keep-a-nigger (adj.)

(US black) intended to maintain a relationship, e.g. used of a child deliberately conceived by a woman with the intention of keeping a lover who had only desired a brief relationship.

[US]Ebonics Primer at www.dolemite.com [Internet] keepa nigga Definition: one night stand women who have the baby of a man that has a girlfriend Example: That bitch done had a keepa nigga baby on me!
[US]Dr Dre ‘Ed-Ucation’ [lyrics] Momma was a hoe, I was weekend pussy / I had you to keep the nigga, it didn’t work out / that’s why he ain’t here.
let off a little nigger (v.)

(US) to act in a crazy, uninhibited way, to let off steam.

[US]Yankee May 175/1: You would swear from the words and sounds [...] that the fellow was going to tear somebody limb from limb. [...] No such thing [...]. He is only letting off a little nigger [DA].
[US]Mencken ‘Designations for Colored Folk’ in AS XIX:3 169: To let off a little nigger to 1828.
[US]Maledicta III:2 170: nigger, to let off a little v phr Act in a wild spontaneous way; from the alleged latent savagery of Negroes.
my nigger (n.) (also my nigga)(US black)

1. a major influence, a role-model, a close friend.

[US]H. Rap Brown Die Nigger Die! 26: He was my nigger, but J.S. had made a way of life on the block which I just figured had aged him.
[US]Source Nov. 108: That’s my nigga, and I love him, but now [...] it’s not Mack 10 as Cube’s little homie no more.
[US]P. Beatty Tuff 151: You always have been, always will be my and our nigger.
[US]‘Dutch’ ? (Pronounced Que) [ebook] I see y’ll as my nigguhs for real, and about to lock shit down.

2. a general term of address.

M.L. Saloy Red Beans and Ricely Yours 98: Hey my nigger. You know, you’re my nigger — my nerve, my jelly preserve.
nigger in a blanket (n.) [SE blanket; alleged resemblance]

(US, Western) a pudding made with dark fruits rolled inside pastry.

[US]R.F. Adams Cowboy Lingo 149: ‘Nigger in a blanket’ was a form of dessert.
F. Yerby Garfield Honor 152: He came back with two heaping plates of nigger in a blanket.
[US]R.F. Adams Western Words (2nd edn) 206/1: nigger in a blanket A cowboy dessert, usually made of raisins in dough.
[US]Maledicta III:2 170: nigger-in-a-blanketn Cowboy dessert made of raisins in dough; from a supposed resemblance.
nigger in charge (n.) [for ety. see head nigger in charge under head n.]

(US black) a sarcastic ref. to any black authority figure.

Carmen Journal 16 Aug. on Scandelous.net [Internet] And for your information, I am the Nigger in charge. When you turn on your light, I am the one who sends the white aides to answer it.
nigger it (v.) [the social situation of many US blacks]

(US) to live in poverty.

[US]J. Hyde Mormonism 120: Many of the people express satisfaction in seeing these ‘better-dressed fellers’ obliged to ‘nigger it’ as well as themselves [DA].
[US]R.F. Burton City of Saints 432: They look with horror at the position of the ‘slavey’ of a pauper mechanic at being required to ‘nigger it’ upon love and starvation.
[US]J.H. Beadle Western Wilds 349: Was it not more of an honor to be the ‘bishop’s fourth’ [...] than the ‘slavery’ of a poor mechanic, to ‘nigger it on love and starvation?’ [DA].
[US]Maledicta III:2 170: nigger it v phr Live meagerly or barely; from the poverty of many Negroes.
nigger out (v.) [stereotype of blacks as incompetent farmers]

1. to exhaust land by using it constantly without fertilization.

[US]Bartlett Dict. Americanisms (2nd edn) 292: To nigger out land, signifies, in Southern phraseology, to exhaust land by the mode of tilling without fertilization pursued in the slave States.
[US]Schele De Vere Americanisms 116: The same regions are familiar with the phrase of niggering out land, which marks the improvident and destructive method of working the same field, year after year, without manure.
[US]Maledicta III:2 170: nigger out vt Exhaust land by tilling without fertilization.

2. (US) to back out, to renege on.

[US]C.L. Cullen Taking Chances 240: Of all the niggering out I ever saw [...] this is the worst.
nigger up (v.)

(US) to decorate in a vulgar manner; thus niggered-up adj.

[UK]P. Theroux Murder in Mount Holly (1999) 59: Is it legal for some bastard with dark skin and a Party Card, all niggered-up with fancy clothes, to walk into your own bank and put his fingers all over your money?
[US]C. Hiaasen Stormy Weather 187: This guy in a business suit and a niggered-up Jeep.
not as nigger less

(US) in no way less.

[UK]Westmorland Gaz. 11 Sept. 8/5: [from N.Y. Teleg.] We aid [...] that John Bull would flare up not a nigger less than we did. Wal, Sir-ree, it’s the fact.
prairie nigger (n.)

(US black) a derog. term for a Native American.

[US]Ebonics Primer at www.dolemite.com [Internet] prairie nigger Definition: derogatory term for a Native American. Example: Break out the listerine! My friend Joe Puffing-Goat the prairie nigger is coming over.
red nigger (n.)

1. (US) a Native American.

[US]R.M. Bird Nick of the Woods I 24: I killed two of the red niggurs, before you could say Jack Robinson.
[US]L.H. Medina Nick of the Woods III i: Here you tarnal, temporal, long-legged, tater-headed, pumpkin-eating red niggers! you coon whelps!
[US]Gallipolis Jrnl (OH) 28 Apr. 1/3: There’s not many of these red western niggers that’s got cunning enough to play rifle and tomahawk with old Jonah Gainly.
[US]Elk Co. Advocate (Ridgway, PA) 1 Apr. 1/1: The redskins must change [...] The boys call you lazy red nigger.
[US]Thomas Co. Cat. (Colby, KS) 26 Sept. 3/4: One o’ them red niggurs stuck his knife into my side.
[US]Wichita Dly Eagle (KS) 1 June 6/1: He hated red niggers as the Indians were sometimes called.
[US]McCook Tribune (NE) 8 Aug. 7/2: We’ll let no red nigger o’ the north woods get the drop on us.

2. (US/W.I.) a person both of whose parents are of mixed-African/white descent.

[US]C. McKay Banjo 303: Red-nigger, you kain’t make nothing at all but the stuff you was made foh.
[WI]L. Bennett ‘Colour-Bar’ in Jamaica Labrish 211: Is not wid black an w’ite, but wid / Red nayga an black nayga.
[US]A. Young Snakes (1971) 44: This little red nigger think he cute.
[US]D. Goines Street Players 82: Ain’t no nigger, either red or black, Earl, ever kicked me before.
street nigger (n.)

1. a burnt cork artiste, who plays and sings for a living.

[UK]Cheshire Obs. 26 Nov. 6/5: Edward Davies, the ‘bones’ of a street nigger party, was charged [...] at the Marlborough-street Police-court.
[UK]Derby Dly Teleg. 16 Dec. 2/5: The prisoner was dressed in the usual street nigger style with blackened face and banjo.
[UK]Dover Exp. 6 June 2/6: Listening to the ribald songs of the street nigger minstrels.
[UK]P.H. Emerson Signor Lippo 9: In the West End I came across three ‘street niggers,’ as I had always called them.

2. a sophisticated ‘streetwise’ black man.

[US]D. Goines Street Players 21: Now that’s what I call a smart street nigger.
sweat like a nigger (at election) (v.)

see under sweat v.2