[ skwot-er ]
/ ˈskwɒt ər /


a person or thing that squats.
a person who settles on land or occupies property without title, right, or payment of rent.
a person who settles on land under government regulation, in order to acquire title.


Nearby words

  1. squashable,
  2. squashy,
  3. squassation,
  4. squat,
  5. squat thrust,
  6. squatter sovereignty,
  7. squatter's right,
  8. squattocracy,
  9. squatty,
  10. squauwmish

Origin of squatter

First recorded in 1775–85; squat + -er1

Related formssquat·ter·dom, noun

Origin of squat

1250–1300; (v.) Middle English squatten < Old French esquater, esquatir, equivalent to es- ex-1 + quatir < Vulgar Latin *coactīre to compress, equivalent to Latin coāct(us), past participle of cōgere to compress (co- co- + ag(ere) to drive + -tus past participle suffix) + -īre infinitive suffix; (noun) Middle English, derivative of the v.; (adj.) Middle English: in a squatting position, orig., past participle of the v.

Related formssquat·ly, adverbsquat·ness, noun

Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for squatter

British Dictionary definitions for squatter


/ (ˈskwɒtə) /


a person who occupies property or land to which he has no legal title
(in Australia)
  1. (formerly) a person who occupied a tract of land, esp pastoral land, as tenant of the Crown
  2. a farmer of sheep or cattle on a large scale
(in New Zealand) a 19th-century settler who took up large acreage on a Crown lease


/ (skwɒt) /

verb squats, squatting or squatted (intr)


Also: squatty (ˈskwɒtɪ) short and broada squat chair


Derived Formssquatly, adverbsquatness, noun

Word Origin for squat

C13: from Old French esquater, from es- ex- 1 + catir to press together, from Vulgar Latin coactīre (unattested), from Latin cōgere to compress, from co- + agere to drive

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 squatter
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper