without any money whatsoever; totally impoverished; destitute.

Origin of penniless

First recorded in 1275–1325, penniless is from the Middle English word peniles. See penny, -less
Related formspen·ni·less·ly, adverbpen·ni·less·ness, noun

Synonyms for penniless

Antonyms for penniless Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for penniless

Contemporary Examples of penniless

Historical Examples of penniless

British Dictionary definitions for penniless



very poor; almost totally without money
Derived Formspennilessly, adverbpennilessness, 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 penniless

"destitute," early 14c., penyles, from penny + -less.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper