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Origin of pawnbroker

First recorded in 1680–90; pawn1 + broker Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words for pawnbroker

lender, broker, Shylock, usurer

Examples from the Web for pawnbroker

Historical Examples of pawnbroker

  • A young soldier (it was Charlie Wilkes) came upon Pincher the pawnbroker.

    The Christian

    Hall Caine

  • His brother, the pawnbroker, was there and had something to say to the Father.

    The Christian

    Hall Caine

  • He had insulted the name of the Father, and Pincher, the pawnbroker, had knocked him down.

    The Christian

    Hall Caine

  • I esteem a pawnbroker in the place of an uncle: that is, in loco.

  • "Yes, they caught him in a pawnbroker's shop," said Mr. Basswood.

    Dave Porter At Bear Camp

    Edward Stratemeyer

British Dictionary definitions for pawnbroker


  1. a dealer licensed to lend money at a specified rate of interest on the security of movable personal property, which can be sold if the loan is not repaid within a specified period
Derived Formspawnbroking, noun
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 pawnbroker

1680s, from pawn (n.1) + broker (n.).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper