impecunious

adjective im·pe·cu·nious \ ˌim-pi-ˈkyü-nyəs , -nē-əs \

Definition of impecunious

:having very little or no money usually habitually :penniless

impecuniosity

play \ˌim-pi-ˌkyü-nē-ˈä-sə-tē\ noun

impecuniously

adverb

impecuniousness

noun

impecunious was our Word of the Day on 07/29/2008. Hear the podcast!

Examples of impecunious in a Sentence

  1. they were so impecunious that they couldn't afford to give one another even token Christmas gifts

Recent Examples of impecunious from the Web

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'impecunious.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

Did You Know?

If impecunious means "penniless," then it stands to reason that "pecunious" can describe someone who has a lot of money. That is true, but "pecunious" is used with far less frequency in English than its opposite and is not found in many dictionaries. What's more, on the rare occasion when "pecunious" is put to use in English, it often means not "wealthy" but "miserly or ungenerous," as in "a pecunious attitude toward the less fortunate." "Impecunious" describes somebody who lacks the money to buy necessities, but it does not carry the connotation of desperation found in such words as "indigent" or "destitute." Both "pecunious" and "impecunious" derive via Middle English from the Latin pecunia, meaning "money."

Origin and Etymology of impecunious

1in- + obsolete English pecunious rich, from Middle English, from Latin pecuniosus, from pecunia money — more at fee


IMPECUNIOUS Defined for English Language Learners

impecunious

adjective

Definition of impecunious for English Language Learners

  • : having little or no money



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