lay·​about | \ ˈlā-ə-ˌbau̇t How to pronounce layabout (audio) \

Definition of layabout

: a lazy shiftless person : idler

Keep scrolling for more

Examples of layabout in a Sentence

she regretted ever asking that layabout to be her roommate, as he created the mess of two people and refused to help with anything
Recent Examples on the Web The relationships among the characters feel lived-in; the generational tension between a group of layabout teens, pulling inhumane pranks in the woods, and their pained parents is especially vivid. Doreen St. Félix, The New Yorker, 3 May 2021 But Yolanda is busy babying Amadeo, Angel’s 33-year-old layabout dad. Meredith Maran, Los Angeles Times, 27 Mar. 2021 Hulu’s show tapped in to a certain kind of layabout, day-drinking malaise that is currently missing from a lot of people’s summers. Angela Watercutter, Wired, 7 Aug. 2020 Fourteen-year-old Adunni lives in a Nigerian village with her layabout, alcoholic father and two brothers. Tsitsi Dangarembga, New York Times, 28 Feb. 2020 Orwell thought of the poor as decent people, but he’d be baffled to observe today that the welfare state has created a class of layabouts who, liberated from economic anguish, shackle themselves to screens, drugs, alcohol. Kyle Smith, National Review, 11 June 2019 The food company, widely admired in the industry for its track record of turning around aging brands, sees opportunity for the Andy Capp’s line of snacks, named after the layabout star of the British comic strip.... Aaron Back, WSJ, 12 Apr. 2019 That gives the lie to a recurrent Republican meme that disability is little more than a haven for layabouts and malingerers. Michael Hiltzik,, 5 June 2018 Americans may be big enough to contain both frontier individualists and comfort-seeking layabouts. Linda Rodriguez Mcrobbie,, 19 May 2018

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

See More

First Known Use of layabout

1932, in the meaning defined above

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More About layabout

Time Traveler for layabout

Time Traveler

The first known use of layabout was in 1932

See more words from the same year

Statistics for layabout

Last Updated

14 May 2021

Cite this Entry

“Layabout.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 24 Jun. 2021.

Style: MLA
MLACheck Mark Icon ChicagoCheck Mark Icon APACheck Mark Icon Merriam-WebsterCheck Mark Icon

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for layabout



English Language Learners Definition of layabout

informal : a lazy person

More from Merriam-Webster on layabout

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for layabout


Test Your Vocabulary

Return of Name that Color!

  • a light greenish blue color
  • Name that color:
How Strong Is Your Vocabulary?

Test your vocabulary with our 10-question quiz!

Universal Daily Crossword

A daily challenge for crossword fanatics.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!