pe·​nu·​ri·​ous | \ pə-ˈnu̇r-ē-əs How to pronounce penurious (audio) , -ˈnyu̇r- \

Definition of penurious

1 : marked by or suffering from penury penurious peasants and fisherfolk
2 : given to or marked by extreme stinting frugality

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Other Words from penurious

penuriously adverb
penuriousness noun

Choose the Right Synonym for penurious

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

Examples of penurious in a Sentence

The penurious school system had to lay off several teachers. the company's penurious management could not be convinced of the need to earmark more money for research and development
Recent Examples on the Web The penurious nicotine levels proved frustrating and costly for South Korean vapers. Andrew Jacobs, New York Times, "The World Pushes Back Against E-Cigarettes and Juul," 30 Mar. 2020 The government of the Democratic Republic of Congo is so penurious that its annual health spending per person could not buy a copy of this newspaper. The Economist, "Taxing times African governments are trying to collect more tax," 9 Jan. 2020 The penurious Patriots pass defense has surrendered just four touchdown passes while picking off 19 passes., "Facing Prescott, Watson, and Mahomes in consecutive weeks is good preparation for the Patriots to fine-tune for the postseason and find out where they really stand.," 22 Nov. 2019 Even critics concede that to cast blame solely on penurious corporations is to ignore a bigger picture. New York Times, "The Day the Music Burned," 11 June 2019 Yet this old, penurious India had an asset that was essential for harmony in a nation of several hundred million people with multiple religions and languages. Tunku Varadarajan, WSJ, "At 70, India Shows a New Vigor," 14 Aug. 2017 Three percent is probably more than most of our readers received in raises, but by federal standards it’s penurious. The Editorial Board, WSJ, "Tax Reform and Deficits," 10 Oct. 2017 Magical thinking, ideological gobbledegook, and penurious inhumanity. Charles P. Pierce, Esquire, "Trump's Response to Puerto Rico Is Not an Aberration," 29 Sep. 2017 Ms. Wolf’s script contains passages describing the penurious daily existence of Vincent, who never sold a painting in his lifetime. Ben Brantley, New York Times, "Review: Listening (Yes, Listening) to the Beauty of van Gogh," 17 Aug. 2017

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

1590, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Time Traveler for penurious

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The first known use of penurious was in 1590

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Last Updated

9 Apr 2020

Cite this Entry

“Penurious.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 1 Jun. 2020.

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How to pronounce penurious (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of penurious

formal : very poor

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