[ hang-er-on, -awn ]
See synonyms for: hanger-onhangers-on on Thesaurus.com

noun,plural hang·ers-on.
  1. a person who remains in a place or joins a group, another person, etc., especially in the hope or expectation of personal gain, even though their presence may be neither wanted nor needed.

Origin of hanger-on

1540–50; noun use of verb phrase hang on;see -er1

Other words for hanger-on

Words Nearby hanger-on

Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2024

How to use hanger-on in a sentence

  • Nor can such a person be a mere fribble; nor can any loose hanger-on of fashion imagine he may assume the character.

    The Fitz-Boodle Papers | William Makepeace Thackeray
  • I must be mighty careful or I'll lose my point of view and become a wretched hanger-on at the skirts of these fakers.

British Dictionary definitions for hanger-on


nounplural hangers-on
  1. a sycophantic follower or dependant, esp one hoping for personal gain

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