Etymology
moor (v.)

"to fasten (a ship) in a particular location by or as by cables, anchors, etc.," late 15c., probably related to Old English mærels "mooring rope," via unrecorded *mærian "to moor," or possibly borrowed from Middle Low German moren or Middle Dutch maren "to moor," from West Germanic *mairojan. Related: Moored, mooring. French amarrer is from Dutch.

Related entries & more 
moor (n.)

"tract of open, untilled, more or less elevated ground, often overrun with heath," c. 1200, from Old English mor "morass, swamp," from Proto-Germanic *mora- (source also of Old Saxon, Middle Dutch, Dutch meer "swamp," Old High German muor "swamp," also "sea," German Moor "moor," Old Norse mörr "moorland," marr "sea"), perhaps related to mere (n.1), or from root *mer- "to die," hence "dead land."

The basic sense in place names is 'marsh', a kind of low-lying wetland possibly regarded as less fertile than mersc 'marsh.' The development of the senses 'dry heathland, barren upland' is not fully accounted for but may be due to the idea of infertility. [Cambridge Dictionary of English Place-Names]

Hence moor-fowl "grouse" (c. 1500); moor-hen (mid-14c.); moor-cock (c. 1200 as a surname).

Related entries & more 
Moor (n.)

"North African, Berber, one of the race dwelling in Barbary," late 14c., from Old French More, from Medieval Latin Morus, from Latin Maurus "inhabitant of Mauretania" (Roman northwest Africa, a region now corresponding to northern Algeria and Morocco), from Greek Mauros, perhaps a native name, or else cognate with mauros "black" (but this adjective only appears in late Greek and may as well be from the people's name as the reverse).

Also applied to the Arabic conquerors of Spain. Being a dark people in relation to Europeans, their name in the Middle Ages was a synonym for "Negro;" later (16c.-17c.); being the nearest Muslims to Western Europe, it was used indiscriminately of Muslims (Persians, Arabs, etc.) but especially those in India. Cognate with Dutch Moor, German Mohr, Danish Maurer, Spanish Moro, Italian Moro. Related: Mooress.

Related entries & more 
Maurice 
masc. proper name, from French Maurice, from Late Latin Mauritius, from Latin Maurus "inhabitant of Mauretania, Moor" (see Moor).
Related entries & more 
Moro 
"Muslim Malay of the Philippines," 1886, from Spanish Moro, literally "Moor" (see Moor).
Related entries & more 
moorland (n.)

"tract of waste land," Old English morlond; see moor (n.) + land (n.).

Related entries & more 
blackamoor (n.)
"dark-skinned person, black-skinned African," 1540s, from black (adj.) + Moor, with connecting element.
Related entries & more 
unmoor (v.)
late 15c., "to free from moorings," from un- (2) "reverse, opposite of" + moor (v.). Related: Unmoored.
Related entries & more 
Morisco (adj.)

"of or pertaining to Moors, Moorish, of Moorish design," 1550s, from Spanish morisco, from Moro (see Moor), and compare Moresco.

Related entries & more 
Moresco (adj.)

"Moorish, of Moorish design or imitation of Moorish work," 1550s, from Italian moresco, from Moro (see Moor). As a type of Italian dance, 1620s. Compare Morisco, which is the Spanish form.

Related entries & more