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poor white

noun, Usually Disparaging and Offensive.
a member of a class of white people, especially of the southern U.S., having low social status and little or no money, property, or education.
See also white trash.
Origin of poor white
An Americanism dating back to 1810-20 Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for poor white
Historical Examples
  • My poor white Knight, are five years of training wasted on you?

    The Gentleman From Indiana Booth Tarkington
  • He was in no sense what we in the South used to call "a poor white."

    America First

  • You even hate a poor white man who has been held prisoner by the Indians.

    A Virginia Scout Hugh Pendexter
  • I only hope that the poor white men had time to escape with their lives.

    In the Rocky Mountains W. H. G. Kingston
  • But in the main the poor white subsisted by hunting and fishing.

  • She briefly, but thoroughly, depicted him as alcohol-soaked, poor white trash.

    The Job Sinclair Lewis
  • (contemptuously) Niggahs always better than poor white trash.

    The Deacon Horace C. Dale
  • I saw the ignorance of the "poor white trash" of the South that day.

    With Fire and Sword Samuel H. M. Byers
  • It was like the cabins of the 'poor white trash' in the forest, only larger.

    Tenting on the Plains Elizabeth B. Custer
  • They knew they were to have lordly times among the "poor white" trash.

    When the Sleeper Wakes Herbert George Wells
British Dictionary definitions for poor white

poor White

(often offensive)
  1. a poverty-stricken and underprivileged White person, esp in the southern US and South Africa
  2. (as modifier): poor White trash
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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