slum

noun, often attributive
\ˈsləm \

Definition of slum 

(Entry 1 of 2)

: a densely populated usually urban area marked by crowding, run-down housing, poverty, and social disorganization

slum

verb
slummed; slumming

Definition of slum (Entry 2 of 2)

intransitive verb

: to visit slums especially out of curiosity broadly : to go somewhere or do something that might be considered beneath one's station sometimes used with it slumming it in budget hotels

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Other Words from slum

Verb

slummer noun

Examples of slum in a Sentence

Noun

He grew up in the slums of New York. His house is a slum.

Verb

He sometimes likes to go slumming in bars around the city.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Local media reported shootouts early Tuesday between drug trafficking gangs in nearby slums. Robert Burns, The Seattle Times, "Mattis heard gunfire outside his hotel in Rio de Janeiro," 14 Aug. 2018 At such a large-scale, the housing project has the potential to change the lives of hundreds of families living in slums, allowing them to trade in their makeshift shelters for a home with a roof and four walls. Lindsey Desimone, ELLE Decor, "UPDATE: Urban Housing Could Be Getting A Colorful New Look," 3 Sep. 2015 The charity was set up to help vulnerable girls mainly from the slum community of West Point. Jonathan Paye-layleh, The Seattle Times, "Liberia investigates US-backed charity after alleged rapes," 16 Oct. 2018 Those operations come as authorities seek to confront drug gangs that control many of Brazil's slum networks known as favelas. Beatrice Christofaro, Fox News, "Brazil, world leader of homicides, hits new record," 9 Aug. 2018 But elements of the unexpected — such as video clips from a Hollywood movie partly filmed on Main Street and a magazine article blasting slum conditions in a black neighborhood — are also included in the mix. Janene Holzberg, Howard County Times, "From movie fame to racial inequity, exhibit looks at warts, glory and tenacity of Ellicott City's Main Street," 27 Apr. 2018 In 1966, King lived in what is now the Lawndale neighborhood, organizing locals against slum conditions. Chicago Tribune, "Rage, riots, ruin," 9 Apr. 2018 In Boston in April 1965, King led his first mass protest in the North against school segregation and slum conditions. Tommie Shelby, BostonGlobe.com, "Want to honor Martin Luther King’s memory? Help abolish ghettos.," 30 Mar. 2018 While many other countries are poor and have increasing access to internet, the Philippines has become a hub for online cybersex trafficking because many Filipinos, even in rural slums, speak English. NBC News, "Cheap tech and widespread internet access fuel rise in cybersex trafficking," 30 June 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

Abby’s beloved grandfather (Ron Cephas Jones, slumming it) gives her an old-fashioned wooden advent calendar. Constance Grady, Vox, "The Holiday Calendar is Netflix’s latest stab at the Hallmark Christmas movie template. It’s … fine.," 2 Nov. 2018 After a couple of years slumming in Cincinnati, Hearn asked about writing for The Cincinnati Enquirer. Jeff Suess, Cincinnati.com, "Our history: Contest could provide missing piece about writer Lafcadio Hearn," 4 Apr. 2018 Auntie calls her a poser out to slum it with the blue-collars, an accusation Mildred answers with a slap. Andrea Simakis, cleveland.com, "Dobama Theatre's family show 'Sherlock Holmes: The Baker Street Irregulars' is slow going for all ages (review)," 9 Dec. 2017 No matter how huffy the establishment gets about members slumming in Trumpworld, don’t expect the holier-than-thou act to last for more than a heartbeat after said members return to the fold. Michelle Cottle, The Atlantic, "Accountability Is for Non-Celebrities," 21 Sep. 2017 What happens when Meryl Streep and Ryan Gosling, two heavenly creatures slumming it in Hollywood, meet up at a glitzy awards gala? Josh Duboff, HWD, "Meryl Streep and Ryan Gosling’s Heavenly Hollywood Meet-Up," 1 Feb. 2017 What happens when Meryl Streep and Ryan Gosling, two heavenly creatures slumming it in Hollywood, meet up at a glitzy awards gala? Josh Duboff, vanityfair.com, "Meryl Streep and Ryan Gosling’s Heavenly Hollywood Meet-Up," 1 Feb. 2017

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

Noun

1825, in the meaning defined above

Verb

1884, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for slum

Noun

origin unknown

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Dictionary Entries near slum

sluicy

sluing arch

sluit

slum

slumber

slumberland

slumberous

Statistics for slum

Last Updated

8 Dec 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for slum

The first known use of slum was in 1825

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More Definitions for slum

slum

noun

English Language Learners Definition of slum

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: an area of a city where poor people live and the buildings are in bad condition

: a very untidy place

slum

verb

English Language Learners Definition of slum (Entry 2 of 2)

: to spend time in places or conditions that are much worse than your usual places or conditions

slum

noun
\ˈsləm \

Kids Definition of slum

: a very poor crowded dirty section especially of a city

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More from Merriam-Webster on slum

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with slum

Spanish Central: Translation of slum

Nglish: Translation of slum for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of slum for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about slum

Comments on slum

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