- Often slums. a thickly populated, run-down, squalid part of a city, inhabited by poor people.
- any squalid, run-down place to live.
- to visit slums, especially from curiosity.
- to visit or frequent a place, group, or amusement spot considered to be low in social status.
Origin of slum
Examples from the Web for slumming
Shirley MacLaine, slumming across the pond in Downton Abbey, talks with Sandra McElwaine.‘A Certain Age’—Shirley MacLaine Rattles Downton Abbey
December 27, 2012
What starts out as Casual Friday must metastasize eventually into Slumming Sunday.Our Sweatpants Nightmare
January 17, 2010
Four hours' slumming convinced me of this, and must convince anyone.Ireland as It Is
Robert John Buckley (AKA R.J.B.)
There's something most distasteful to me, too, about Thyme's going about slumming.Fraternity
A year or two ago it was the mode in Society to go “slumming.”The Seven Secrets
William Le Queux
I think, of all the humbugs of London society, slumming is about the worst.'The Dictator
How Miss Alice would like that—to catch me going 'slumming' with my maid!Miss Billy's Decision
Eleanor H. Porter
- a squalid overcrowded house, etc
- (often plural) a squalid section of a city, characterized by inferior living conditions and usually by overcrowding
- (modifier) of, relating to, or characteristic of slumsslum conditions
- to visit slums, esp for curiosity
- Also: slum it to suffer conditions below those to which one is accustomed
Word Origin and History for slumming
1845, from back slum "dirty back alley of a city, street of poor or low people" (1825), originally a slang or cant word meaning "room," especially "back room" (1812), of unknown origin, pastime popularized by East End novels. Related: slums. Slumscape is from 1947.
"visit slums of a city," especially for diversion or amusement, often under guise of philanthropy, 1884, from slum (n.). Pastime popularized by East End novels. Earlier it meant to visit slums for disreputable purposes or in search of vice (1860). Related: Slumming.