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90s Slang You Should Know


[paw-per] /ˈpɔ pər/
a person without any means of support, especially a destitute person who depends on aid from public welfare funds or charity.
a very poor person.
Origin of pauper
1485-95; < Latin: poor
Related forms
pauperage, pauperdom, noun Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
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Examples from the Web for pauper
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • pauper emigrants would not, in all probability, be allowed to land.

    The Alien Invasion William Henry Wilkins
  • The gift is given, and yet for all that you may be dying, and half-dead, a pauper.

    Expositions of Holy Scripture Alexander Maclaren
  • In default of identification, it would be turned over for burial among the pauper dead.

    The Tempering Charles Neville Buck
  • “I feel just like the Prince in the Prince and the pauper, when the rat made a bed of him,” she said.

    Lucile Triumphant Elizabeth M. Duffield
  • It was a pauper's grave that closed over the body of Mozart—coffin piled on coffin, and no one marked the spot.

  • The daughter of a Braganza does not unite herself with a pauper.

    Tales of the Malayan Coast Rounsevelle Wildman
  • pauper children may be bound out by the officers having charge of the poor.

    The Government Class Book Andrew W. Young
  • A pauper emigrant's boy was taking the place of my son in everything.

    Peter and Jane S. (Sarah) Macnaughtan
British Dictionary definitions for pauper


a person who is extremely poor
(formerly) a destitute person supported by public charity
Derived Forms
pauperism, noun
Word Origin
C16: from Latin: poor
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 pauper

1510s, "person destitute of property or means of livelihood," from Latin pauper "poor, not wealthy, of small means" (see poor (adj.)). Originally in English a legal word, from Latin phrase in forma pauperis (late 15c.) "in the character of a poor person," thus allowed to sue in court without legal fees.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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