par·​si·​mo·​ni·​ous | \ ˌpär-sə-ˈmō-nē-əs How to pronounce parsimonious (audio) \

Definition of parsimonious

1 : exhibiting or marked by parsimony especially : frugal to the point of stinginess

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Other Words from parsimonious

parsimoniously adverb

Choose the Right Synonym for parsimonious

stingy, close, niggardly, parsimonious, penurious, miserly mean being unwilling or showing unwillingness to share with others. stingy implies a marked lack of generosity. a stingy child, not given to sharing close suggests keeping a tight grip on one's money and possessions. folks who are very close when charity calls niggardly implies giving or spending the very smallest amount possible. the niggardly amount budgeted for the town library parsimonious suggests a frugality so extreme as to lead to stinginess. a parsimonious lifestyle notably lacking in luxuries penurious implies niggardliness that gives an appearance of actual poverty. the penurious eccentric bequeathed a fortune miserly suggests a sordid avariciousness and a morbid pleasure in hoarding. a miserly couple devoid of social conscience

Did You Know?

English isn't stingy when it comes to synonyms of parsimonious. Stingy,close,penurious, and miserly are a few terms that, like parsimonious, suggest an unwillingness to share with others. Stingy implies a marked lack of generosity, whereas close suggests keeping a tight grip on one's money and possessions. Penurious implies frugality that gives an appearance of actual poverty, and miserly suggests avariciousness and a morbid pleasure in hoarding. Parsimonious usually suggests an extreme frugality that borders on stinginess.

Examples of parsimonious in a Sentence

A society that is parsimonious in its personal charity (in terms of both time and money) will require more government welfare. — William J. Bennett, The Death of Outrage, 1998 Their merchant princes were supposed to be parsimonious and austere: fustian in apparel and coarse in diet. — Simon Schama, The Embarrassment of Riches, 1988 With saints, Dante is apathetic. They are written with a dry pen, and parsimonious vision. — Robert Lowell, Collected Prose, 1987 a parsimonious woman who insists that charity begins—and ends—at home
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Recent Examples on the Web In short, profits are an elegant and parsimonious way of promoting efficiency within a business as well as society at large. Alexander William Salter, WSJ, "Profit Keeps Corporate Leaders Honest," 8 Dec. 2020 Most of my partners were parsimonious in their spending habits, preferring to eat while on duty at the many hospitals and burger joints that served the cops gratis. Marc Bona, cleveland, "Jim’s Steak House: Readers’ memories flood back about classic restaurant," 17 May 2020 The compensation for this relative growth malaise is a sea of profits, at least by Amazon’s parsimonious standards. Washington Post, "Amazon’s Supercharged Growth Is Gone," 26 Apr. 2019 Part of the explanation for the new Vette's parsimonious fuel usage is cylinder deactivation. Connor Hoffman, Car and Driver, "Chevy's 2020 Corvette Will Get 27 MPG on the Highway," 25 Jan. 2020 The new bridge will have to be simple and parsimonious, but not trivial. Liz Stinson, Curbed, "Renzo Piano reveals design to replace collapsed Genoa bridge," 21 Dec. 2018 The number-crunching chairman was also parsimonious about store investments. Suzanne Kapner, WSJ, "Edward Lampert, the Hedge-Fund Star Who Bet on Sears, Is Unrepentant," 17 Oct. 2018 Specifically, a few lean toward the precious and parsimonious, like slices of alabaster fluke adorned with tiny maitake mushrooms and shreds of aromatic celery leaf, or hamachi adorned with mint and scarlet slices of plum. Mike Sula, Chicago Reader, "Andersonville’s Passerotto is a tale of two peninsulas," 21 June 2018 Arthur is by turns retiring and pointed, with a soft, cublike appearance and a tight, parsimonious grin. Gideon Lewis-kraus, WIRED, "The Blockchain: A Love Story—And a Horror Story," 18 June 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'parsimonious.' 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 parsimonious

1598, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for parsimonious

parsimony + -ous

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Time Traveler for parsimonious

Time Traveler

The first known use of parsimonious was in 1598

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Last Updated

13 Dec 2020

Cite this Entry

“Parsimonious.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 22 Jan. 2021.

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More Definitions for parsimonious


How to pronounce parsimonious (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of parsimonious

formal : very unwilling to spend money

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