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[loh-fer] /ˈloʊ fər/
a person who loafs; lazy person; idler.
Origin of loafer
1820-30, Americanism; perhaps short for *landloafer vagabond; compare German (obsolete) Landläufer, Dutch landloper; see landloper
Related forms
loaferish, adjective


[loh-fer] /ˈloʊ fər/
a brand name for a moccasinlike slip-on shoe. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for loafer
Historical Examples
  • A good worker like him, not a loafer or a drunkard, he could have understood in that case.

    L'Assommoir Emile Zola
  • Only one man may be scouted by any one, and that is the loafer.

    Brighter Britain! (Volume 1 of 2) William Delisle Hay
  • And, as for their calling you a loafer—well, that's your own fault, too.

    The Rise of Roscoe Paine Joseph C. Lincoln
  • The loafer came in with a grin of good-nature on his perspiring and dirty face.

  • What did she think he was—a fool, a loafer, a uniformed nonentity?

    The Game of Rat and Dragon Cordwainer Smith
  • To be proud that one wasn't a loafer or a drone, or a parasite on the body economic.

    Mixed Faces Roy Norton
  • It is sunshine all the time in this lotus land of the loafer.

  • He spoke in a refined voice, though his appearance was that of a loafer.

    The Golden Face William Le Queux
  • All the mowing was done with scythes, and the raking with hand rakes and "loafer" rakes.

    When Life Was Young C. A. Stephens
  • If people don't understand what it is you want to do, they always call you a loafer!

British Dictionary definitions for loafer


a person who avoids work; idler
a moccasin-like shoe for casual wear
Word Origin
C19: perhaps from German Landläufer vagabond
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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Word Origin and History for loafer

"idler, person who loafs," 1830, of uncertain origin (see loaf (v.)). As a type of shoe, 1937. Related: Loafers.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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