- a samurai who no longer serves a daimyo, or feudal lord.
Origin of ronin
From the Japanese word rōnin literally, ‘wave man’ (understood as ‘a man tossed around like a wave’)
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018
Examples from the Web for ronin
Thus the forty-seven ronin were pre-eminently "righteous" when they debauched themselves with every swinish vice.The Gist of Japan
R. B. Peery
Born about 1680 he, by birth a Samurai, became a Ronin, and entered the studio of Kiyonobu.Chats on Japanese Prints
Arthur Davison Ficke
And the reason she built the temple was that she might pray for the soul of the ronin whom the sight of her beauty had ruined.The Life and Letters of Lafcadio Hearn, Volume 2
We should have the story of the Forty-seven Ronin, not a Japanese stage version, but a work from the source-material.The Art Of The Moving Picture
- a lordless samurai, esp one whose feudal lord had been deprived of his territory
- such samurai collectively
Word Origin and History for ronin
"masterless man, outcast, outlaw," 1871, from Japanese, from ro "wave" + nin "man."
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper