Neckbeard is a term for a type of facial hair, that is only grown or growing around one’s beard and not on the face.
A more recent, slang expression that is also “neckbeard” refers to geeks of today, specifically describing them.
Quite often, a person within the “neckbeard” stereotype is displayed as socially awkward, pretentious as well as obese, all the while a great enthusiast of comic books, roleplaying games, otaku culture, anime and manga series, as well as various video games.
The first time “neckbeard” was recorded was in 1847, by Charles Seasfield in his historical novel, titled Rambleton.
Here he describes the five different types of beards, one of which is the titular style, reserved for the neck.
Around 2003, the term “neckbeard” had gotten associated with computer geeks, and appeared in many forums and message boards, in relation to nerds, geeks, weebs and other social outcasts.
The word appeared in contexts such as Usenet and Something Awful.
Spread and Usage
Later on, it got more and more embedded into the slang of our modern era and during the 2010’s, several memes were created, depicting a “typical neckbeard” as an obese young man, with the said facial hairstyle as well as a fedora, which he tips gently, uttering the legendary catchphrase; m’lady.