"mink" (n.) = 'a black, a Negro'?

Joel S. Berson Berson at ATT.NET
Sun May 10 13:25:52 UTC 2009

At 5/9/2009 11:33 PM, Douglas G. Wilson wrote:
>I reckon "moch[o]a" is probably right, but I'm not sure why it's used
>here, whether some mink were called "mocha" or whether it's just to say
>"black" again (but "mocha" is/was less dark than "black", right?). My
>OED shows a "mocha" referring to the color of a cat (?relevance).

The OED says of mocha "a dark brown colour".  So since darker skin
was seen as less desirable than lighter (and the writer of the
quotation is very, very likely white), then it would fit the
disrespect of " like so many Mohe-choah Mink in a mud-bank".  And
remember that the OED also describes the animal as having "dark brown fur".


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