having little or no money; penniless; poor.

Origin of impecunious

1590–1600; im-2 + obsolete pecunious wealthy < Latin pecūniōsus, equivalent to pecūni(a) wealth + -ōsus -ous
Related formsim·pe·cu·ni·ous·ly, adverbim·pe·cu·ni·ous·ness, im·pe·cu·ni·os·i·ty [im-pi-kyoo-nee-os-i-tee] /ˌɪm pɪˌkyu niˈɒs ɪ ti/, noun

Synonyms for impecunious Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for impecunious

Historical Examples of impecunious

  • All this riot of wealth would no doubt impress the impecunious Charles.

    Henry VIII.

    A. F. Pollard

  • But we never did it—because, I think, although we were plucky, we were impecunious!

    The History of "Punch"

    M. H. Spielmann

  • I'd not load one of them with a wild, impecunious Irishman like myself.

  • With him we have not anything to do, except to say that of all men he was the most impecunious.

    An Old Man's Love

    Anthony Trollope

  • They seemed an impecunious assemblage, gathered for mere sport.

    Mystic London:

    Charles Maurice Davies

British Dictionary definitions for impecunious



without money; penniless
Derived Formsimpecuniously, adverbimpecuniousness or impecuniosity (ˌɪmpɪkjuːnɪˈɒsɪtɪ), noun

Word Origin for impecunious

C16: from im- (not) + -pecunious, from Latin pecūniōsus wealthy, from pecūnia money
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

Word Origin and History for impecunious

"lacking in money," 1590s, from assimilated form of in- "not, opposite of" (see in- (1)) + Latin pecuniosus "rich," from pecunia "money, property" (see pecuniary). Related: Impecuniously; impecuniosity.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper