settlement

[set-l-muh nt]
noun
  1. the act or state of settling or the state of being settled.
  2. the act of making stable or putting on a permanent basis.
  3. a state of stability or permanence.
  4. an arrangement or adjustment, as of business affairs or a disagreement.
  5. an agreement signed after labor negotiations between union and management.
  6. the terms reached in this agreement.
  7. the settling of persons in a new country or place.
  8. a colony, especially in its early stages.
  9. a small community, village, or group of houses in a thinly populated area.
  10. a community formed and populated by members of a particular religious or ideological group: a Shaker settlement.
  11. the satisfying of a claim or demand; a coming to terms.
  12. Law.
    1. final disposition of an estate or the like.
    2. the settling of property, title, etc., upon a person.
    3. the property so settled.
  13. British.
    1. legal residence in a specific place.
    2. (of a pauper) the right to claim food and shelter from an official agency or specific town or district.
  14. Also called settlement house. Social Work. an establishment in an underprivileged area providing social services to local residents.
  15. a subsidence or sinking of all or part of a structure.

Origin of settlement

First recorded in 1620–30; settle1 + -ment
Related formsnon·set·tle·ment, nouno·ver·set·tle·ment, nounpre·set·tle·ment, nounre·set·tle·ment, noun
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

British Dictionary definitions for settlement houses

settlement

noun
  1. the act or state of settling or being settled
  2. the establishment of a new region; colonization
  3. a place newly settled; colony
  4. a collection of dwellings forming a community, esp on a frontier
  5. a community formed by members of a group, esp of a religious sect
  6. a public building used to provide educational and general welfare facilities for persons living in deprived areas
  7. a subsidence of all or part of a structure
    1. the payment of an outstanding account, invoice, charge, etc
    2. (as modifier)settlement day
  8. an adjustment or agreement reached in matters of finance, business, etc
  9. law
    1. a conveyance, usually to trustees, of property to be enjoyed by several persons in succession
    2. the deed or other instrument conveying such property
    3. the determination of a dispute, etc, by mutual agreement without resorting to legal proceedings
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 settlement houses

settlement

n.

1620s, "act of fixing or steadying;" from settle (v.) + -ment. Meaning "a colony," especially a new one, "tract of country newly developed" is attested from 1690s; that of "small village on the frontier" is from 1827, American English. Sense of "payment of an account" is from 1729; legal sense "a settling of arrangements" (of divorce, property transfer, etc.) is from 1670s.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

settlement houses in Culture

settlement houses

Social and cultural centers established by reformers in slum areas of American cities during the 1890s and the early 1900s. Jane Addams founded the most famous settlement house, in Chicago. (See Progressive movement.)

Note

Settlement houses attracted idealistic college graduates eager to learn how the poor lived and to improve the condition of the poor.
The New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.