lay·​about ˈlā-ə-ˌbau̇t How to pronounce layabout (audio)
: a lazy shiftless person : idler

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 You might be tempted to regard early retirees as layabouts, soaking up sunshine while everyone else toils. Amy X. Wang, New York Times, 7 May 2024 That’s because welfare programs are easiest to axe when conservatives go hunting for budget cuts — Americans typically view them as serving layabouts and malingerers at their expense. Michael Hiltzik, Los Angeles Times, 24 Nov. 2023 His characters are mostly students of various stripes: competitive drinkers, epic layabouts, operatic whiners. Sophia Nguyen, Washington Post, 30 Aug. 2023 Consumers of drugs were characterized as unpredictable layabouts who endangered national hygiene and productivity. Federico Perelmuter, Washington Post, 10 Aug. 2023 The layabout in question is the Alcon blue butterfly (Maculinea alcon) a large and beautiful summer visitor. Ed Yong, Discover Magazine, 16 Oct. 2010 Anyone magnanimous enough to apologize to a deadbeat layabout like me (and my staff) doesn't deserve to be banned from anywhere. Li Cohen, CBS News, 18 Oct. 2022 Cole refuses, cementing his reputation as a feckless layabout. Omar L. Gallaga, Washington Post, 17 Oct. 2022 The trick is to avoid becoming either a workaholic or a layabout. Arthur C. Brooks, The Atlantic, 4 Aug. 2022

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'layabout.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

First Known Use

1932, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of layabout was in 1932

Dictionary Entries Near layabout

Cite this Entry

“Layabout.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 19 May. 2024.

Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
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