"Canuck" is a slang term for Canadians.


The term was coined in the 19th century, although its etymology is unclear. Possibilities include:
* "kanata" ["Random House Dictionary] "village" (See Name of Canada)
* "Can"ada + -"uc" (Algonquian noun suffix)
* "Connaught", an obscure term for Irish-French-Canadians.
* Some linguists hold that it is derived from the Hawaiian "Kanaka." [Irving Lewis Allen (1990). "Unkind Words: Ethnic Labeling from Redskin to WASP," pp 59, 61–62. New York: Bergin & Garvey. ISBN 0-89789-217-8.]


The Random House Dictionary notes that: "The term Canuck is first recorded about 1835 as an Americanism, originally referring specifically to a French Canadian. This was probably the original meaning, though in Canada and other countries, "Canuck" refers to any Canadian." []

Usage and examples

Canadians use "Canuck" as an affectionate or merely descriptive term for their nationality. Other nationalities may use the word as an affectionate, or derogatory, or merely a descriptive term.

Usage of the term includes:
* The Vancouver Canucks hockey team
* Canuck Place Children's Hospital, providing specialized pediatric palliative care in Vancouver BC
* The Canucks rugby Club, playing in Calgary since 1968.
* The Crazy Canucks, Canadian alpine ski racers who competed successfully on the World Cup circuit in the '70s.
* Johnny Canuck, a personification of Canada who appeared in early political cartoons of the 1860s resisting Uncle Sam's bullying. Johnny Canuck was revived in 1942 by Leo Bachle to defend Canada against the Nazis.
* In 1975 in comics by Richard Comely, Captain Canuck is a super-agent for Canadians' security, with Redcoat and Kebec being his sidekicks. (Kebec is claimed to be unrelated to Capitaine Kébec of a French-Canadian comic published two years earlier.) Captain Canuck had enhanced strength and endurance thanks to being bathed in alien rays during a camping trip. The captain was reintroduced in the mid-1990s, and again in 2004.
* Operation Canuck was the designated name of a British SAS raid led by a Canadian captain, Buck McDonald in January 1945.
* "The Dark Canuck" is a song on The Tragically Hip's album "In Violet Light".
*In 1995, Canada Post released 45-cent postage stamps depicting Johnny Canuck and Captain Canuck.
*"Canuck" is a nickname for the Curtiss JN4 and Avro CF-100 aircraft. The CF-100 was the only Canadian designed and built jet fighter to enter operational service. From 1950–1958, 692 Canucks were built. They remained in service until 1981
*One of the first uses of "Canuck" — in the form of "Kanuk" — specifically referred to Dutch Canadians as well as the French.
*"Canuck" also has the derived meanings of a Canadian pony (rare) and a French-Canadian patois ["The Oxford Companion To The English Language"] (very rare).
*Team Canuck is a small-sized team at RoboCup.
* North Plainfield High School Canucks, is the mascot of this High School in New Jersey.
* The Curtiss JN-4(Can) biplane was known as the Canuck.
* "Canuck the Duck", a character in Return to Zork.
* Soviet Canuckistan


* "Oxford English Dictionary"
* "Unkind Words : Ethnic Labeling from Redskin to WASP" - Irving Lewis Allen ISBN 0-89789-217-8

ee also

* Soviet Canuckistan, a derogatory nickname for Canada.
* Canuck Letter.
* Canuck, Saskatchewan

External links

* [ History of the Vancouver Canucks] National Hockey League team
* [ Canuck Unlimited] Canadians airplane crews who operated in Southeast Asia during World War II
* [ Johnny Canuck] : with a stamp illustration
* [ Captain Canuck] : with a stamp illustration
* [ The Word Detective]

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Look at other dictionaries:

  • Canuck — Ca*nuck , n. 1. A Canadian. [Slang] [1913 Webster] 2. A small or medium sized hardy horse, common in Canada. [Colloq.] [1913 Webster] …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Canuck — 1835, perhaps a cross between CANADA (Cf. Canada) and CHINOOK (Cf. Chinook), the native people in the Columbia River region. In U.S., often derogatory …   Etymology dictionary

  • Canuck — ☆ Canuck [kə nuk′ ] Informal n. [earlier Kanuck, apparently < Haw kanaka, man] a Canadian; sometimes, specif., a French Canadian adj. Canadian; sometimes, specif., French Canadian: Sometimes a disparaging term …   English World dictionary

  • Canuck — 1. noun /kəˈnʌk/ a) A Canadian. We saw a few partridges: we also met a lusty fellow in a forest road with a keg of whisky slung round him, who called to us ‘Come boys and have some grog, Im what you call a canuck:’ a (Canadian). b) A Canadian,… …   Wiktionary

  • Canuck — a Canadian, a citizen of Canada, Johnny Canuck    When we visited Montana, a clerk called us Canucks …   English idioms

  • Canuck Inn and Suites — (Ниагара Фолс,Канада) Категория отеля: 2 звездочный отель Адрес: 5334 Kitchener Stre …   Каталог отелей

  • Canuck Letter — The Canuck Letter (lettre des Canucks) est une fausse lettre à l’attention de l’éditeur du Manchester Union Leader, journal régional du New Hampshire, publiée le 24 février 1972, deux semaines avant l élection primaire démocrate dans cet État, au …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Canuck Letter — The Canuck Letter was a forged letter to the editor of the Manchester Union Leader , published February 24 1972, two weeks before the New Hampshire primary of the 1972 United States presidential election. It implied that Sen. Edmund S. Muskie, a… …   Wikipedia

  • Canuck, Saskatchewan — Infobox Settlement official name = Hamlet of Canuck other name = native name = nickname = settlement type = Hamlet motto = imagesize = image caption = flag size = image seal size = image shield = shield size = mapsize = map caption = mapsize1 =… …   Wikipedia

  • Canuck — noun Etymology: origin unknown Date: 1835 a Canadian and especially a French Canadian …   New Collegiate Dictionary

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