A person having white ancestors except for one black grandparent. Used especially as a classification under certain European colonial legal systems and now considered offensive.
[Alteration of Spanish cuarterón, from cuarto, quarter, from Latin quārtus; see kwetwer- in the Appendix of Indo-European roots.]
The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition copyright ©2018 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.