khaki, noun and & adjective

Also with initial capital.
khakis, occasionally kakhies, or unchanged.
Afrikaans, English, Urdu, Show more From Afrikaans kakie, adaptation of general English khaki dust-coloured (from Urdu), with spelling remodelled to the English root; alluding to the colour of British army field-uniforms.
A. noun
a. In historical contexts. The Boer name for a British soldier during the Anglo-Boer War; kakie sense 1. Frequently in the plural, the British army. See also rooibaadjie sense 1.
1900 F.R.M. Cleaver in M.M. Cleaver Young S. Afr. (1913) 148The khakis had probably anticipated that we should take this road.
1901 P.J. Du Toit Diary (1974) 43A brisk skirmish had taken place at Geduld, where approximately 50 Khakis fell and about an equal number were taken prisoner and disarmed.
1902 Mrs Dickenson in E. Hobhouse Brunt of War 211He was in his farm with his sister, who was also blind, when the Khakis (i.e. the British) arrived.
1902 D. Van Warmelo On Commando 44It was a happy time — away from khaki, far beyond the reach of the roar of the cannon.
1902 D. Van Warmelo On Commando 166Our wives and children and our exiled men we cannot get out of khaki’s hands, and that is the greatest difficulty in our way.
1903 E.F. Knight S. Afr. after War 43The Dutch bitterly resented the establishment of the military camp at Middelburg, and practically the entire population..petitioned that the ‘khakis’ should be removed from the country.
1944 J. Mockford Here Are S. Africans 100Her husband and his commandos were riding to orders from Pretoria and engaging the khakis wherever they might be found.
1955 W. Illsley Wagon on Fire 35Engaged in skirmishes against the Khakies,..sniping the enemy from mountain fastnesses which the British Tommy could not penetrate.
1961 D. Bee Children of Yesterday 230I can see them coming at me in my dreams sometimes — the Khakis. I can see them falling from their horses, with their swords shining and flashing in the sun.
1980 N. Ferreira Story of Afrikaner 27One day the British soldiers, the hated Khakis, arrived.
1988 J. Boekkooi in Frontline Oct. 23Those Cape Afrikaners who stayed behind in comfort,..talking English with the imperialists, while their trekking cousins braved lions and crocodiles and blacks and khakis.
b. transferred sense derogatory. An English-speaking South African; also called rooinek.
1940 Forum 7 Sept. 3I wonder if Dr. van Nierop’s statement that one Boer is enough for ten Khakies is not perhaps true?
1972 Sunday Times 11 June 15We are fighting the English. The fight has been declared against the khakis — the battlefield is wide open.
1980 Cape Times 29 Apr.This list included lying; bad temper and naughtiness in general; Judas; dirty hands; Milner, Kitchener, Jameson and Rhodes; all Khakies; all Englishmen.
B. adjective
a. Of or pertaining to the British army, especially during the Anglo-Boer War of 1899–1902; British; English(-speaking).
1902 D. Van Warmelo On Commando 156Some did not wait to find their horses. Some even escaped on khaki horses that had strayed from the camp.
1903 R. Kipling Five Nations 207Ubique means the tearin’ drift where, breech-blocks jammed with mud, The khaki muzzles duck an’ lift across the khaki flood.
1913 J. Brandt Petticoat Commando 41Mother, I vow I shall never be seen with a khaki officer as long as our men are in the field.
1920 S. Black Dorp 5When an Afrikander’s turned khaki like that — King George and the Union Jack stuck all over him —..he’s a smeerlap (blackguard).
1920 S. Black Dorp 225It’s a khaki trick, Johannes — boycotting is thing the English invented.
1937 C.R. Prance Tante Rebella’s Saga 35Tante Katrina van Ammenies..chased him with insult and contumely, threatening to loose the dogs on him, because, by his breeches and leggings he must be a khaki-Englander.
1972 Cape Argus 16 Sept. 9My Pyper predicted the three ‘emotional’ fronts the national Party would employ were ‘khakigevaar, swartgevaar, and rooigevaar.’
1976 [see mbongo].
b. As a qualifier in Special Combinations:
khaki Boer historical, plural khaki Boers, khaki Boere // [Afrikaans kakieboer (see Boer)], joiner sense 1;
khakibos, [Afrikaans, bos bush], khaki bush (see below); also attributive;
khaki brandziekte ?obsolete [South African Dutch, see brandsiekte], see quotation 1914;
khaki bush, khaki weed [see Pettman quotation 1913], any of several species of alien weed, especially Tagetes minuta and Inula graveolens of the Asteraceae, and Alternanthera pungens of the Amaranthaceae; kakiebos, see kakie sense 2; see also Afrikaner noun sense 9.
1906 G.B. Beak Aftermath of War 227There are the so-called ‘khaki Boers’ — those who surrendered before the end of the war.
1946 V. Pohl Adventures of Boer Family 121The advance guard of a British cavalry force..mistook him for one of the Khaki Boere (traitors who had joined the enemy).
1934 H.C. Bosman Mafeking Rd (1969) 136He seemed to have picked out all the useless bits for his pictures — a krantz and a few stones and some clumps of khaki-bos.
1945 Outspan 3 Aug. 49Against these intruders, especially the persistent and ubiquitous ‘khaki bos’, a cohort of picannins is marshalled.
1966 C.A. Smith Common Names 288Khakibos,..The vernacular name is derived from the current belief that the species was introduced by British troops who wore khaki coloured uniforms.
1978 C.M. Rip Contemp. Social Pathology 94The so-called ‘Khaki-bos’ weed.
1982 Sunday Times 3 Jan. (Mag. Sect.) 2My father..once told his opinion even a khakibos would wither under my ministrations.
1986 Farmer’s Weekly 25 July 6Khakibos silage? It’s enough, you would think, to make a cow wish it had only one stomach.
1991 BP in Weekly Mail 28 Mar. 39‘Rub “green-flea-flee” thoroughly into the dog’s fur..then dance around waving a sprig of khaki-bos, chanting “fleas be gone”.’
1993 Rhodos (Rhodes Univ.) 1 July 4Pupils..used onion skins, lichen, khakibos and cochineal to dye commercial hand-knitting wool.
1914 Farmer’s Annual 181What is the best remedy for scab in equines — ‘Khaki brandziekte,’ as it is known by farmers owing to its having been very severe among horses shortly after the war?
1947 C.R. Prance Antic Mem. 75‘Flag’ the next train, whether passenger or goods, to return to Bloemfontein in quest of further orders to investigate anthrax, glanders, ‘khaki-brandziekte,’ etc., etc., in the map’s blank spaces to north, south, east or west.
1907 R.W. Thornton in Agric. Jrnl of Cape of G.H. 7 Jan. 76The Khaki Bush is a species of Aplopappas...The plant is an annual shrub.
1913 Times Lit. Suppl. (U.K.) 24 July 309A certain weed which came from the Argentine with imported fodder is called the ‘Khakibush.’ The name cannot be more that a dozen years old, but it will no doubt endure, since the weed apparently shows no signs of departing.
1913 C. Pettman Africanderisms 258Khakibush, A species of Aplopappus. The name has reference to the dull fawn colour the withered leaves assume...The name is also applied to Alternanthera Achyrontha, spread widely throughout South Africa, the seeds having been introduced from the Argentine Republic with imported fodder. The name was given to this plant because it made its appearance in military camps during the late war in places where it was previously unknown.
1917 R. Marloth Dict. of Common Names of Plants 48Khaki bush, Tagetes minuta. One of the Mexican marigolds which has become a troublesome weed.
1925 L.D. Flemming Crop of Chaff 18With consummate tact he says nothing about the price of cattle, gielziekte, the khaki bush.
1956 P. Becker Sandy Tracks 118Tall, damp, tamboekie grass and pungent-scented khaki-bush.
1981 Daily Dispatch 13 Feb. 10Khaki bush (Mexican marigold) and Afrikaners suppressed eelworm incidence.
1907 H.G. Mundy in Tvl Agric. Jrnl V. 939Khaki-weed or Amaranthus weed (Alternanthera echinata).
1928 N. Stevenson Afr. Harvest 27The side of the hill was overgrown with khaki weed and thorn-bushes.
1949 L. Hunter Afr. Dawn 5Even the khaki weed, growing everywhere in profusion and usually so robust, looked forlorn.
1966 L.G. Berger Where’s Madam 3We peered across the dense screen of khaki weed which smelt like marigolds.
1971 Daily Dispatch 4 Sept. 6The plants (sc. dagga) are somewhat similar in appearance to the Mexican marigold or khakiweed.
1972 M.R. Levyns in Std Encycl. of Sn Afr. VI. 373Khaki-weed,..Tall khaki-weed or khaki-bush..(Tagetes minuta). This plant is by some termed the ‘true khaki-bush’...(Cape) khaki-weed or khaki-bush..(Inula graveolens). Introduced from the Mediterranean region...Khaki-weed,..Kakiebos (Altenanthera pungens = A. repens). Prostrate perennial belonging to the family Amaranthaceae.
1983 D.A.C. Maclennan Reckonings 25We..approached through crackly grass and khaki weed, beer cartons, broken glass.
1991 Dict. of Horticulture (Dept of Nat. Educ.) 330Khaki weed, (Inula graveolens)...Khaki weed, (Tagetes minuta, Mexican marigold, stinking Roger).
1994 Weekend Post 1 Jan. (Leisure) 6To prevent fleas from invading a vacant house, scatter khaki weed branches in every room before going on a trip.
2. Patriotic; militaristic; jingoistic. Found especially in the phrase khaki election (used originally of the war spirit in England at the time of the Anglo-Boer War of 1899–1902).
[1913 Everyday Phrases Explained 164The Khaki Election, This was the General Election of 1900, when the Government appealed successfully to the country for its approval of the South African War.]
1948 Press Digest No.10, 64A khaki election...General Smuts wants to make the following election a ‘sort of war election again’ since he hopes that such an election will once more ensure him the success which he attained in the previous election.
1948 Press Digest No.13, 81The Afrikaner front is afraid of a khaki-election.
1979 T. Pakenham Boer War (1982) 464Polling for the election — the ‘Khaki election’, as people called it, alias the ‘patriotic election’ — would start in a fortnight.
1989 Reader’s Digest Illust. Hist. of S. Afr. 384It was a typical ‘khaki election’, held in the shadow of war, in which the UP won 89 seats.
1990 Sunday Times 3 June 4Down at the Waterval Festival Showgrounds..on Republic Day, Eugene talked khaki patriotism. Talked soldiers for God and Fatherland...Talked armed struggle.
The Boer name for a British soldier during the Anglo-Boer War; kakie1. Frequently in the plural, the British army.
An English-speaking South African; also called rooinek.
Of or pertaining to the British army, especially during the Anglo-Boer War of 1899–1902; British; English(-speaking).
Patriotic; militaristic; jingoistic. Found especially in the phrase khaki election (used originally of the war spirit in England at the time of the Anglo-Boer War of 1899–1902).
Hence khakidom noun  historical, a derogatory term for the English governing bureaucracy in South Africa.
1921 W.C. Scully Harrow 464He felt that he and his puppet the Commandant, the staff and, in fact, the whole of the amateur khakidom were outclassed.
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