Definition of beggar in English:
1A person, typically a homeless one, who lives by asking for money or food.
- How many times have you been asked in the street for some money from a seemingly homeless person or a beggar?
- ‘One of your beggars asked me for money for a cup of coffee,’ he said.
- I do voluntary work, am a Christian, invariably give money to beggars and try to spread a little happiness as I go by.
tramp, beggarman, beggarwoman, vagrant, vagabond, down-and-out, homeless person, derelict, mendicant;
pauper, poor person;
North American hobo
British informal dosser
2 [with adjective] informal A person of a specified type, especially one to be envied or pitied: poor little beggars
More example sentences
- The cool million generally goes to some lucky beggar down south.
- The poor beggar's badly burned body was supposed to be in the coffin awaiting collection.
- Indeed, the poor beggars attending the meeting in April would have witnessed Lee's wholehearted endorsement of his chief executive's vision.
verb[with object] Back to top
Reduce (someone) to poverty: why should I beggar myself for you?
More example sentences
- Now if it could be shown that beggaring rich people inevitably enriches poor people there might be something to say for a crusade against inequality.
- Those of the left claimed that naive women were seduced into becoming avaricious consumers, beggaring their families.
- That would stop the competition gaining market share by beggaring your own people.
beggar belief (or description)
- Be too extraordinary to be believed or described: a disregard for common sense which beggars beliefMore example sentences
- It beggars belief that a group of local councillors can really believe there is any merit in this option.
- ‘Cave-in’ doesn't even begin to describe mismanagement so far off the scale as to beggar belief.
- Although the inadequate measures to deal with the problem beggar belief, what is even more incredible is the mentality of a farmer or a householder who will dispose of their rubbish by dumping it into the nearest river.
beggars can't be choosers
set a beggar on horseback and he'll ride to the Devil
- proverb Someone unaccustomed to power or luxury will abuse or be corrupted by it.Example sentences
- Or, as he says: "When by the advice of that eminent physician, Dr. Lettsom, I purchased a horse, and saved my life by the exercise it afforded me, the old adage, 'Set a beggar on horseback and he'll ride to the devil,' was deemed fully verified."