noun pen·u·ry \ˈpen-yə-rē\

: the state of being very poor : extreme poverty

Full Definition of PENURY

:  a cramping and oppressive lack of resources (as money); especially :  severe poverty
:  extreme and often niggardly frugality

Examples of PENURY

  1. <lived in a time when single women like herself faced a lifetime of genteel penury>

Origin of PENURY

Middle English, from Latin penuria, paenuria want; perhaps akin to Latin paene almost
First Known Use: 14th century


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