spelling conventional in 15c.-17c. English to add emphasis to borrowed French nouns ending in stressed -on; also used to represent Italian -one, Spanish -ón; all from Latin -onem. Compare shalloon (1670s) for French chalon, a kind of material used for linings. The ending is used occasionally to form words in English, such as spittoon, quadroon, and some older ones no longer with us, such as shabberoon "disreputable person" (c. 1700).
updated on July 29, 2022