indentured servant


Definition of indentured servant

: a person who signs and is bound by indentures to work for another for a specified time especially in return for payment of travel expenses and maintenance

Examples of indentured servant in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web The tensions lie in the rancor between the colony’s Puritan community and the Anglican couple Eleanor and John Billington, who until recently were indentured servants. Samantha Harvey, New York Times, "Was There a Murder on the Mayflower?," 16 Mar. 2020 At the time, the tobacco economy relied on white and black indentured servants with finite contracts and some rights under the law. Erin Blakemore, National Geographic, "How two centuries of slave revolts shaped American history," 8 Nov. 2019 No people or animals other than birds lived on the archipelago until Portuguese explorers discovered it in the early 15th century and populated it with minor gentry, indentured servants, slaves, and prisoners given the choice between jail and exile. Trish Lorenz, Condé Nast Traveler, "Portugal's Azores Islands Are Still a Wild Paradise," 7 Feb. 2020 The laws never went into effect, and under her reign, the nobility increased its power over their indentured servants. Erin Blakemore, National Geographic, "Idealistic and tough, Catherine the Great sought to modernize Russia," 1 Nov. 2019 Mattai’s multimedia objects, which examine the present-day legacy of her family’s past as indentured servants in Guyana, is thoughtful, colorful and complicated. John Wenzel, The Know, "From “Northside” to Monet, Denver’s biggest arts and culture moments of 2019," 24 Dec. 2019 As late as 1964, Bo and Lake Giles were still toiling like indentured servants. CBS News, "On the Road for the holidays with Steve Hartman," 23 Dec. 2019 Before then, more families lived on farms, out of sight of surveillance, and children could be their parents’ little workers—indentured servants until adulthood. Lynne Tillman, Harper's magazine, "Roy Meets World," 25 Nov. 2019 The Servants Plot, as it was known, involved white and black indentured servants who rebelled against the colony’s exploitative tobacco cultivation industry. Erin Blakemore, National Geographic, "How two centuries of slave revolts shaped American history," 8 Nov. 2019

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

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First Known Use of indentured servant

1723, in the meaning defined above

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The first known use of indentured servant was in 1723

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Cite this Entry

“Indentured servant.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 25 Feb. 2021.

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