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inner city

an older part of a city, densely populated and usually deteriorating, inhabited mainly by poor, often minority, groups.
Compare central city.
Origin of inner city
First recorded in 1960-65
Related forms
inner-city, adjective Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
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Examples from the Web for inner city
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • The inner city has many peony beds of that sort, both the tree and tuber kind, but they have only leaves to show now.

  • In 1848 the inner city of Vienna was enclosed within a broad and lofty bastion, fosse, and glacis.

  • The inner city faces the cardinal points, and is walled and moated all round.

    Siam George B. Bacon
  • Sixty-five openings gave access to the inner city, by which the roadways, waterways, and railways entered.

    Dumas' Paris Francis Miltoun
  • They lived in a house of their own in the inner city; and that signifies a great deal in Vienna.

British Dictionary definitions for inner city

inner city

  1. the parts of a city in or near its centre, esp when they are associated with poverty, unemployment, substandard housing, etc
  2. (as modifier): inner-city schools
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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inner city in Culture

inner city definition

A general term for impoverished areas of large cities. The inner city is characterized by minimal educational opportunities, high unemployment and crime rates, broken families, and inadequate housing. (See ghettos.)

The American Heritage® New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition
Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.
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