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Marabou is a term of Haitian origin denoting multiracial ethnicity. The term describes the offspring of a person of mixed race: black African/European and an Amerindian, specifically the native Taíno, born in Haiti (formerly Saint-Domingue). The continuing importation of thousands of enslaved Africans under the French and Spanish diluted the generations of so-called "marabous" over the decades. Today most Haitians of Amerindian descent are assumed also to have African ancestry.

Although the racial classifications no longer existed officially after colonization ended, the term was still used colloquially for many generations afterwards to describe a person's physical traits or appearance. A marabou was considered an individual with very dark skin, straight/wavy hair, and European features in contrast to a grimelle (female) or grimeau (male) who had very fair skin, kinky hair, and African features.

Other terms exist for the "marabou" racial mixture in other countries (see Cafuzo, Zambo).


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