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[set-l-muh nt] /ˈsɛt l mənt/
the act or state of settling or the state of being settled.
the act of making stable or putting on a permanent basis.
a state of stability or permanence.
an arrangement or adjustment, as of business affairs or a disagreement.
an agreement signed after labor negotiations between union and management.
the terms reached in this agreement.
the settling of persons in a new country or place.
a colony, especially in its early stages.
a small community, village, or group of houses in a thinly populated area.
a community formed and populated by members of a particular religious or ideological group:
a Shaker settlement.
the satisfying of a claim or demand; a coming to terms.
  1. final disposition of an estate or the like.
  2. the settling of property, title, etc., upon a person.
  3. the property so settled.
  1. legal residence in a specific place.
  2. (of a pauper) the right to claim food and shelter from an official agency or specific town or district.
Also called settlement house. Social Work. an establishment in an underprivileged area providing social services to local residents.
a subsidence or sinking of all or part of a structure.
Origin of settlement
First recorded in 1620-30; settle1 + -ment
Related forms
nonsettlement, noun
oversettlement, noun
presettlement, noun
resettlement, noun Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
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Examples from the Web for settlement house
Historical Examples
  • Her dream was to live at the settlement house and give all her time to the work.

  • No settlement house, with day nurseries, was maintained in the slums.

  • Did you arrange for the lecture courses at the settlement house?

    Narcissus Evelyn Scott
  • I'm down here on the Earth, and in our settlement house, safe and sound.

    On the Lightship Herman Knickerbocker Viel
  • Julia gave him a grave smile, and let him follow her into the settlement house.

    The Story Of Julia Page Kathleen Norris
  • All I knew was learned at the settlement house, or from books.

    The Story Of Julia Page Kathleen Norris
  • The next day he went to Margaret Ormsby at the settlement house.

    Marching Men Sherwood Anderson
  • The next day I went down to a settlement house which I remembered passing at some time or other.

    One Way Out William Carleton
  • It came either through a settlement house or through the generosity of some interested private patron.

    One Way Out William Carleton
  • "The whole system is corrupt from top to bottom," said the head of one settlement house to me.

    One Way Out William Carleton
British Dictionary definitions for settlement house


the act or state of settling or being settled
the establishment of a new region; colonization
a place newly settled; colony
a collection of dwellings forming a community, esp on a frontier
a community formed by members of a group, esp of a religious sect
a public building used to provide educational and general welfare facilities for persons living in deprived areas
a subsidence of all or part of a structure
  1. the payment of an outstanding account, invoice, charge, etc
  2. (as modifier): settlement day
an adjustment or agreement reached in matters of finance, business, etc
  1. a conveyance, usually to trustees, of property to be enjoyed by several persons in succession
  2. the deed or other instrument conveying such property
  3. the determination of a dispute, etc, by mutual agreement without resorting to legal proceedings
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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Contemporary definitions for settlement house

an inner-city institution providing educational, recreational, and social services to a large community's 21st Century Lexicon
Copyright © 2003-2014, LLC
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Word Origin and History for settlement house



1620s, "act of fixing or steadying;" from settle (v.) + -ment. Meaning "a colony," especially a new one, "tract of country newly developed" is attested from 1690s; that of "small village on the frontier" is from 1827, American English. Sense of "payment of an account" is from 1729; legal sense "a settling of arrangements" (of divorce, property transfer, etc.) is from 1670s.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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