mo·​hair | \ ˈmō-ˌher How to pronounce mohair (audio) \

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 Similarly, in March, for NPR’s Tiny Desk concert, Styles wore a baby blue Gucci mohair sweater featuring a chick. Irina Grechko,, "An Ode To Harry Styles’ Sweater Style," 7 Oct. 2020 The designer integrated plenty of vintage pieces, but made sure to use items made from child-friendly materials like mohair and canvas. Lauren Jones, House Beautiful, "A Historic San Francisco House Gets a Modern—and Kid-Proof—Update," 6 July 2020 The mohair sweater and plaid skirt worn by Corey (Tyler), meanwhile, read more America’s sweetheart. Christian Allaire, Vogue, "25 Years After Empire Records, I Still Want to Dress Like the Cast," 22 Sep. 2020 The 1970s Baker sofa (from One Vintage) was in pristine condition when Talbot found it, with the original mohair upholstery still intact. Lauren Johnson, House Beautiful, "This Historic Chicago Home Makes the Case for Pink In Every Room," 17 Sep. 2020 Warner made sure that the pieces in the third-floor playroom were extra-durable, like a travertine coffee table that could easily withstand a child standing on it, molded mohair chairs, and a super-forgiving modular sofa. Lauren Jones, House Beautiful, "A Historic San Francisco House Gets a Modern—and Kid-Proof—Update," 6 July 2020 Stilin relied on natural textiles like wool and alpaca, layers of different textures like fur dining chairs—the homeowners are avid skiers, so the chairs are alpine-inspired—and mohair rugs to warm up the interior. Robert Rufino, ELLE Decor, "Designer Robert Stilin’s First Book is Packed with the Chicest Interiors," 5 Nov. 2019 These days, its shops across the country sell all things cozy, from teapots to Christmas cake, but the brand’s handwoven blankets—in mohair, lamb's wool, cashmere and Donagel wool—remain its signature ware. Eimear Lynch, WSJ, "‘Souvenir’ Blankets for Shut-Ins," 1 Apr. 2020 Chairs, early-19th-century French with original mohair fabric—Euro Trash (R); House Beautiful, "May 2012 Issue Product Guide," 18 Mar. 2012

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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Time Traveler for mohair

Time Traveler

The first known use of mohair was in 1569

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Last Updated

22 Oct 2020

Cite this Entry

“Mohair.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 30 Oct. 2020.

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More Definitions for mohair


How to pronounce mohair (audio)

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 How to pronounce mohair (audio) \

Kids Definition of mohair

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

More from Merriam-Webster on mohair

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

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