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almshouse

[ahmz-hous] /ˈɑmzˌhaʊs/
noun, plural almshouses
[ahmz-hou-ziz] /ˈɑmzˌhaʊ zɪz/ (Show IPA).
Chiefly British
1.
a house endowed by private charity for the reception and support of the aged or infirm poor.
2.
(formerly) a poorhouse.
Origin
1350-1400
1350-1400; Middle English almes hous. See alms, house
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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British Dictionary definitions for alms house

almshouse

/ˈɑːmzˌhaʊs/
noun
1.
(Brit, history) a privately supported house offering accommodation to the aged or needy
2.
(mainly Brit) another name for poorhouse
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for alms house

almshouse

n.

mid-15c., from alms + house (n.).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Encyclopedia Article for alms house

almshouse

in the United States, a locally administered public institution for homeless, aged persons without means. Such institutions radically declined in number in the second half of the 20th century, replaced by other means of subsistence and care.

Learn more about almshouse with a free trial on Britannica.com
Encyclopedia Britannica, 2008. Encyclopedia Britannica Online.
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