verb (used without object)

verb (used with object)


Origin of tramp

1350–1400; Middle English trampen to stamp; cognate with Low German trampen; akin to Gothic ana-trimpan to press hard upon. See traipse, trample
Related formstramp·er, nountramp·ish, adjectivetramp·ish·ly, adverbtramp·ish·ness, nounun·tramped, adjective

Synonyms for tramp Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for tramp

Contemporary Examples of tramp

Historical Examples of tramp

  • One fact, however, was distinct in his mind—Peterkin had struck her a terrible blow in the Tramp House.


    Mary J. Holmes

  • It was full of words he did not understand, for the only vehicle of emotion the Tramp possessed was blasphemy.

    The Wonderful Visit

    Herbert George Wells

  • Tramp nothing,” declared Nat boldly, as he made his way softly to the front door.

  • But the grimy young stagehand, halting in front of me with an armful of the Tramp Juggler's playthings, cut his sentence in two.

    Jane Journeys On

    Ruth Comfort Mitchell

  • His appearance was not impressive, not very unlike the representation of him in the various pictures in his 'Tramp Abroad'.

    Mark Twain

    Archibald Henderson

British Dictionary definitions for tramp



(intr) to walk long and far; hike
to walk heavily or firmly across or through (a place); march or trudge
(intr) to wander about as a vagabond or tramp
(tr) to make (a journey) or traverse (a place) on foot, esp laboriously or wearilyto tramp the streets in search of work
(tr) to tread or trample
(intr) NZ to walk for sport or recreation, esp in the bush


a person who travels about on foot, usually with no permanent home, living by begging or doing casual work
a long hard walk; hike
a heavy or rhythmic step or tread
the sound of heavy treading
Also called: tramp steamer a merchant ship that does not run between ports on a regular schedule but carries cargo wherever the shippers desire
slang, mainly US and Canadian a prostitute or promiscuous girl or woman
an iron plate on the sole of a boot
Derived Formstramping, nountrampish, adjective

Word Origin for tramp

C14: probably from Middle Low German trampen; compare Gothic ana-trimpan to press heavily upon, German trampen to hitchhike
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 tramp

late 14c., "walk heavily, stamp," from Middle Low German trampen "to stamp," from Proto-Germanic *tramp- (cf. Danish trampe, Swedish trampa "to tramp, stamp," Gothic ana-trimpan "to press upon"), probably from a variant of the Proto-Germanic source of trap. Related: Tramped; tramping.


"person who wanders about, vagabond," 1660s, from tramp (v). Sense of "steamship which takes cargo wherever it can be traded" (as opposed to one running a regular line) is attested from c.1880. The meaning "promiscuous woman" is from 1922.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper