Why Americans are called Yankees

All over the world, Americans are pejoratively called "Yankees", but originally this word did not mean a resident of the United States of America. There are several main versions that reveal the secret of the origin of the word "Yankee" ...

In 1758, British General James Wolfe first named a New England soldier with the word "Yankee". Some researchers suggest that the word has Native American roots - "eankke" in the Cherokee language means "coward". Others say the word is borrowed from the Hurons. In an article in 1819, the Reverend John Hawkwilder suggested that the word "Yankee" originated from the attempts of Native Americans to speak English. James Fenimore Cooper supported him in his book St. John's Wort.

Perhaps the word is of Dutch origin. Most linguists take the Dutch version quite seriously, noting the active interaction between the Dutch colonies in New Holland (currently New York, New Jersey, Delaware, and western Connecticut) and the British in Massachusetts, Rhode Island, and eastern Connecticut. The Dutch names Jan and Kaas were and remain popular, and sometimes they are combined into one name - Jan Kaas. "Yankees", perhaps the name of the people as, say, "Ivan" or "Fritz". Jan Kaas or Jan Kiis can be translated as "John Cheese" and this is how the Dutch colonists were often called, who were known for their love of their cheeses.

But be that as it may, by the end of the 18th century the word had spread everywhere. There was a steady expression "damned Yankees." During and after the American Civil War (1861-1865), the Confederates referred to their northern enemies as such. Senator J. William Fulbright of Arkansas wrote in 1966: "The very word 'Yankee' still evokes in the Southerners historical memories of defeat and humiliation, the burning of Atlanta, the Sherman march and the destruction of the family estate."

The song "Yankee Doodle", which was popular during the American Revolutionary War (1775-1783), helped spread the term. Today, "Yankee Doodle" is Connecticut's anthem.

Outside the United States, the word was first used by Thomas Chandler Haliburton in the playful stories "Yankee Watchmaker" published in Halifax, Canada in 1835. An American character who taught tough Canadians to be as smart and hardworking as the Yankees

Today in some parts of the world, especially in Latin America and East Asia, the word "Yankee" is associated with anti-Americanism and is used in expressions such as "Yankee go home!"