mo·​hair | \ˈmō-ˌher \

Definition of mohair 

: a fabric or yarn made wholly or in part of the long silky hair of the Angora goat also : this hair

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Did You Know?

Mohair entered the English language in the 16th century, spelled variously as "mocayare," "mockaire," "mokayre," and "moochary." It was borrowed from Italian mocaiarro, a word which itself was borrowed from Arabic mukhayyar. The adjective mukhayyar meant "select" or "choice." How this Arabic adjective came to be the English noun "mohair" is a bit of a mystery. It is possible that "mukhayyar" was used as a colloquial noun in the sense of "wool of prime quality" (that is, "choice wool"). In English, the shift from "mocayare" and similar spellings to "mohair" was likely influenced by the more familiar English word hair.

Examples of mohair in a Sentence

a sweater made of mohair and silk

Recent Examples on the Web

Soft textiles, such as sheepskin, wool, and mohair, are a necessity in cold climates, and keep the aesthetic paired down, but add some visual interest. Sienna Fantozzi, House Beautiful, "Everything You Need To Know About Scandinavian Design," 18 Sep. 2018 The Oly bench is upholstered in Innovations' Mont Blanc mohair; the wall sconces are by Dennis & Leen. Sarah Yang, House Beautiful, "Top Pin of the Day: A Shaker-Style Staircase," 11 June 2014 On Tuesday, Marks & Spencer, Mango, and Primark also confirmed their commitment to go mohair-free., "Why Your Favorite Fast-Fashion Stores Just Banned Mohair," 16 May 2018 Taking mohair off the racks isn’t going to happen overnight. Mekita Rivas, Teen Vogue, "H&M, Zara, and Other Retailers Pledge to Go Mohair-Free," 17 May 2018 The custom dining table is by Shop Now, the Dessin Fournir chairs are in a Myung Jin mohair, and the 19th-century chandelier is original. Ingrid Abramovitch, ELLE Decor, "Commune Design Brings Western Charm to a Spanish Colonial Revival House in Beverly Hills," 2 May 2018 While some were a little confusing (mohair turtlenecks), most were just really, really fun. Liz Raiss, GQ, "All the Wildest Looks from Coachella 2018," 17 Apr. 2018 With the demise of price supports in the 1990s, the U.S. mohair industry fell apart. Lynn Brezosky, San Antonio Express-News, "Hill Country sheep and goat ranchers find a hot market," 9 Feb. 2018 King’s Saddlery on North Main Street, offer mohair cinches, leather chaps, belts, and frames hand-tooled on premises. Sunset, "Living in the West: The Best of Cowboy Country," 22 Jan. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'mohair.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of mohair

1569, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for mohair

modification of obsolete Italian mocaiarro, from Arabic mukhayyar, literally, choice

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Statistics for mohair

Last Updated

10 Dec 2018

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Time Traveler for mohair

The first known use of mohair was in 1569

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More Definitions for mohair



English Language Learners Definition of mohair

: an expensive fabric or wool made from the long, soft hair of a goat from Asia


mo·​hair | \ˈmō-ˌher \

Kids Definition of mohair

: a fabric or yarn made from the long silky hair of an Asian goat

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More from Merriam-Webster on mohair

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with mohair

Spanish Central: Translation of mohair

Nglish: Translation of mohair for Spanish Speakers Encyclopedia article about mohair

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