[ men-di-kuh nt ]
/ ˈmɛn dɪ kənt /


begging; practicing begging; living on alms.
pertaining to or characteristic of a beggar.


a person who lives by begging; beggar.
a member of any of several orders of friars that originally forbade ownership of property, subsisting mostly on alms.


Nearby words

  1. mender,
  2. menderes,
  3. menderes, adnan,
  4. mendes,
  5. mendicancy,
  6. mendicity,
  7. mending,
  8. mendips,
  9. mendocino,
  10. mendota

Origin of mendicant

1425–75; late Middle English < Latin mendīcant- (stem of mendīcāns), present participle of mendīcāre to beg, equivalent to mendīc(us) beggarly, needy + -ant- -ant

Related formsnon·men·di·cant, adjective Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for mendicant

British Dictionary definitions for mendicant


/ (ˈmɛndɪkənt) /


(of a member of a religious order) dependent on alms for sustenancemendicant friars
characteristic of a beggar


a mendicant friar
a less common word for beggar
Derived Formsmendicancy or mendicity (mɛnˈdɪsɪtɪ), noun

Word Origin for mendicant

C16: from Latin mendīcāre to beg, from mendīcus beggar, from mendus flaw

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 mendicant
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper