Definition of pickney in English:



West Indian
  • (chiefly in Caribbean English) a child.

    ‘me and the pickney have to survive some way’
    Compare with pickaninny
    • ‘Now please don't get me wrong, I don't believe in spoiling kids at all, and I don't feel that I was raised as a pwoil pickney (spoiled child) at all.’
    • ‘At this rate, only rich people pickney (rich people's kids) will be able to take advantage of this service.’
    • ‘I didn't pick up on this perverted undertone when I was a pickney, did you?’
    • ‘Let it be a warning to all school pickney, whether they hail from Cherry Gardens or from Tivarli!’
    • ‘That must have been drummed into the head of the elderly man's wife when she was a pickney.’
    child, baby, infant, son, daughter, youngster, little one, tot, tiny tot
    View synonyms


The word pickney is derived from pickaninny but has different connotations. Pickaninny is now usually regarded as an offensive racial slur for a black child, whereas pickney is commonly used to mean ‘child’ in Caribbean English and in that context does not generally have offensive or racial overtones


Contraction of pickaninny.