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indigent

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adjective in·di·gent \ˈin-di-jənt\

Simple Definition of indigent

  • : lacking money : very poor

Full Definition of indigent

  1. 1 :  suffering from extreme poverty :  impoverished

  2. 2 a archaic :  deficient b archaic :  totally lacking in something specified

indigent noun

Examples of indigent

  1. … every day, I fled the house and drove aimlessly over mountain roads that passed by indigent farms and strange, unpainted churches. —Mark Singer, New Yorker, 25 Dec. 2000 & 1 Jan. 2001

  2. A land post was offered him in November, 1765, as Governor of Greenwich Hospital, a shelter for disabled and indigent seamen and a place affording many openings for jobbery (the contemporary term for bureaucratic graft). —Barbara W. Tuchman, The First Salute, 1988

  3. He went around climbing dark stairs and knocking on doors and taking flash photos of indigent families in their dwellings. —E.L. Doctorow, Ragtime, (1974) 1975

  4. Because he was indigent, the court appointed a lawyer to defend him.

  5. The clinic provides free care for indigent patients.



Origin of indigent

Middle English, from Middle French, from Old French, from Latin indigent-, indigens, present participle of indigēre to need, from Old Latin indu + Latin egēre to need; perhaps akin to Old High German echerode poor


First Known Use: 15th century



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