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90s Slang You Should Know


[pawn-broh-ker] /ˈpɔnˌbroʊ kər/
a person whose business is lending money at interest on personal, movable property deposited with the lender until redeemed.
Origin of pawnbroker
First recorded in 1680-90; pawn1 + broker Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
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Examples from the Web for pawnbroker
Historical Examples
  • The young sempstress was occupied in collecting the different articles that she was about to carry to the pawnbroker's.

  • Bart overheard him talking of Stowley and the pawnbroker there.

    The Opal Serpent Fergus Hume
  • An inquiry of a City policeman guided him to a pawnbroker's shop.

    Somehow Good William de Morgan
  • The pawnbroker leered as he put down a sovereign and a shilling.

    Stingaree E. W. (Ernest William) Hornung
  • The women took the pawnbroker's tickets from the pockets of the man's trousers and hurried out.

    Miss or Mrs.? Wilkie Collins
  • Well, but you're not going to take my young ladies to a pawnbroker's?

  • All gone to the pawnbroker's; the money gone for rum—her virtue, shame, everything gone.

  • You won't mind just confiding to me that you are a pawnbroker?

  • And its recovery from the pawnbroker's he could not remember leaving it at became an absurd dream.

    Somehow Good William de Morgan
  • She could get fifty dollars for those if she went to a pawnbroker.

    Sister Carrie Theodore Dreiser
British Dictionary definitions for pawnbroker


a dealer licensed to lend money at a specified rate of interest on the security of movable personal property, which can be sold if the loan is not repaid within a specified period
Derived Forms
pawnbroking, noun
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 pawnbroker

1680s, from pawn (n.1) + broker (n.).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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