clochard was our Word of the Day on 12/01/2013. Hear the podcast!
Did You Know?
Why such a fancy French word for a bum? The truth of the matter is, nine times out of ten, you will find clochard used for not just any bum, but a French bum - even more specifically, a Parisian bum. And, sometimes, it's even a certain type of Parisian bum - a type that has been romanticized in literature and is part of the local color. Nevertheless, as "français" as this word (which comes from the French verb clocher, meaning "to limp") may seem, its regular appearance in English sources since 1937 makes it an English word, too.
Origin and Etymology of clochard
French, from clocher to limp, from Vulgar Latin *cloppicare, from Late Latin cloppus lame
First Known Use: 1937
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