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Khaki

From Academic Kids

Khaki, in British or European parlance, is a type of green tinged brown fabric, or the color of such fabric. Traditionally pronounced "KAR-kee" (which remains common usage in Canada), it is today more often called "KAH-kee" in Britain and "KAA-kee" in the USA. The name comes from the Persian khak meaning earth-colored or dust colored (through the Urdu language). The original khaki fabric is a closely twilled cloth of linen or cotton.

Brigadier Sir Harry Burnett Lumsden began the use of Khaki for British Army regiments serving under him in India in 1848. All British troops in India adopted khaki in 1885 having previously used white as the tropical colour. The Boers used khaki clothing as camouflage in the first Boer War; in the second Boer War the British did as well.

The United States Army adoped khaki, where it means a greenish tan or sand color, during the Spanish American War . It has become de rigueur for military uniforms of militaries the world over (e.g. the United States Navy and the United States Marine Corps), but has also spread to civilian clothing, where "khakis" since the 1950s has meant tan cotton twill trousers.

"Khaki" has also become a common slang term in the United States Navy that refers to chief petty officers and officers (who wear a khaki-colored uniform, also referred to as "khakis".)

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