Moccasin is a Native American word,
of which the spelling and pronunciation
vary in different dialects, a
made of deerskin or other soft leather.
It is made in one piece; the sole is soft
and flexible and the upper part is often
beading or other ornament. It is the footwear
of the North American Indian tribes and
is also worn by hunters, traders and settlers.
sheep shearers make for themselves footware
consisting of part of a cured sheepskin
with the wool inside to use while working;
these moccasins protect
the feet, provide good grip on wooden floors
and soak up the sweat of the wearer while
not hurting the animal.
In botany, the
is known in the
United States of America,
as the moccasin flower, from its
resemblance to a shoe or moccasin.
The name moccasin is
also given to a venomous snake found as
far north as North Carolina and westward
to the Rocky Mountains, and popularly called
cottonmouth from the white rim
around the mouth. It belongs to the family
Crotalidae, species Ancistrodon (or Cenchris)
piscivorus, is about two feet long and is
often found in marshy land. It is sometimes
to distinguish it from the
upland moccasin (Ancistrodon contortrix
or atrofuscus), which is commonly
called copperhead and is found
further north in dry and mountainous regions.
The name is possibly a distinct word of
which the origin has not been traced.