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John cotton

[kot-n] /ˈkɒt n/

John, 1584–1652, U.S. clergyman, colonist, and author (grandfather of Cotton Mather).
any of various herbaceous plants and shrubs of the malvaceous genus Gossypium, such as sea-island cotton, cultivated in warm climates for the fibre surrounding the seeds and the oil within the seeds See also sea-island cotton
the soft white downy fibre of these plants: used to manufacture textiles
cotton plants collectively, as a cultivated crop

any substance, such as kapok (silk cotton), resembling cotton but obtained from other plants
Sir Henry. 1907–87, English golfer: three times winner of the British Open (1934, 1937, 1948)

late 13c., from Old French coton (12c.), ultimately (via Provençal, Italian, or Old Spanish) from Arabic qutn, a word perhaps of Egyptian origin. Philip Miller of the Chelsea Physic Garden sent the first cotton seeds to American colony of Georgia in 1732. Also ultimately from the Arabic word, Dutch katoen, German Kattun, Provençal coton, Italian cotone, Spanish algodon, Portuguese algodão. Cotton gin is recorded from 1794 (see gin (n.2)).

“to get on with” someone (usually with to), 1560s, perhaps from Welsh cytuno “consent, agree.” But perhaps also a metaphor from cloth finishing and thus from cotton (n.). Related: Cottoned; cottoning.

Related Terms

in tall cotton, shit in high cotton


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