[ pol-troon ]
/ pɒlˈtrun /


a wretched coward; craven.


marked by utter cowardice.

Origin of poltroon

1520–30; earlier pultrowne, pultron, poultroone < Middle French poultron < Old Italian poltrone idler, coward, derivative of poltro foal < Vulgar Latin *pulliter, derivative of Latin pullus young animal; see foal

Related forms

pol·troon·er·y, nounpol·troon·ish, adjectivepol·troon·ish·ly, adverb
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Examples from the Web for poltroon

British Dictionary definitions for poltroon


/ (pɒlˈtruːn) /


an abject or contemptible coward


a rare word for cowardly

Word Origin for poltroon

C16: from Old French poultron, from Old Italian poltrone lazy good-for-nothing, apparently from poltrīre to lie indolently in bed, from poltro bed
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