mo·​hair ˈmō-ˌher How to pronounce mohair (audio)
: 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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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 This Cyber Monday, try on Marni’s multicolored mohair version. Porter Simmons, Vogue, 27 Nov. 2023 Her picks range from a luxurious mohair throw to the prettiest porcelain tea service. Hannah Chubb, Peoplemag, 1 Mar. 2024 Photo: Courtesy of Michael J. Lee Choose Resilient Surfaces Sticky fingers can ruin a silk mohair in seconds flat. Ariel Okin, Vogue, 23 Feb. 2024 His work leans toward luxury streetwear with mixes of functional details like bags made solely from zippers and textured mohair blazers. Essence, 22 Feb. 2024 See all Example Sentences for mohair 

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'mohair.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History


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

First Known Use

1569, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of mohair was in 1569


Dictionary Entries Near mohair

Cite this Entry

“Mohair.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 22 Jun. 2024.

Kids Definition


mo·​hair ˈmō-ˌha(ə)r How to pronounce mohair (audio)
: a fabric or yarn made of or with the long silky hair of the Angora goat
also : the hair of the Angora goat

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