Definition of churl in English:


Line breaks: churl
Pronunciation: /tʃəːl


1A rude and mean-spirited person: this trio are used whenever some churl wants to have a pop at progressive rock
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  • Fans of studio politics everywhere understand that while Harvey's a boor, Bob is merely churlish, and boors hardly ever stand down for churls.
  • It is, in fact, an exceptionally charming story, and even hard-hearted churls will find themselves smiling with beatific indulgence by the end of it.
  • Dalglish, throughout, behaved admirably and only churls later questioned his decision to quit Anfield.
1.1 archaic A miser.
More example sentences
  • Is he a classless churl or an American standard bearer?
  • When a few words will rescue misery out of her distress, I hate the man who can be a churl of them.
2 archaic A peasant.
More example sentences
  • Not since the days when a churl suffered extravagant penalties for offending a Norman lord have we seen such disparities of treatment within our justice system.
  • The good yeomen and thespians who put on the River City Shakespeare Festival are in need of a few knaves, churls, gentlemen and gentlewomen to volunteer as well.
  • If I may, Lord, who is the churl you drag with you?


Old English ceorl, of West Germanic origin; related to Dutch kerel and German Kerl 'fellow', also to carl.

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