What is a Canuck? Depends on whom you ask

April 14, 2011 5:13:34 AM PDT
For the third straight year, Chicago's beloved Blackhawks are in the playoffs with those hated guys from north of the border -- the Vancouver Whatyoumacallits?

The Canucks. But was is a Canuck, anyway?

Chicagoans who spoke with ABC7's Frank Mathie had mixed answers as to what a Canuck was. A person from Canada? A derogatory name? A hockey player from Canada?

ABC7's Ravi Baichwal just happens to be from Canada. And, he happens to play hockey. So what does he say a Canuck is?

"Canadian Ukrainian. So you get a lot of names that end in the UK sound. So you get a lot of hockey players names Andrewchuck, Sawchuck, Howerchuck, Davichuck. It goes on and on and on," Baichwal said. "It's Canadian Ukrainian."

But at DePaul University, Mathie got a different opinion. English professor and linguist Craig Sirles says Canuck does not come from a Ukrainian influence. It's older than that.

"I think it comes from Iroquoians term meaning 'from the village,' Canata and Uk," said Sireles. "And that simply collapsed in to Canook or Canuck."

The Hawks take on the Ukrainian Iroquois Indians Canucks at


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