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[im-pi-kyoo-nee-uh s] /ˌɪm pɪˈkyu ni əs/
having little or no money; penniless; poor.
Origin of impecunious
1590-1600; im-2 + obsolete pecunious wealthy < Latin pecūniōsus, equivalent to pecūni(a) wealth + -ōsus -ous
Related forms
impecuniously, adverb
impecuniousness, impecuniosity
[im-pi-kyoo-nee-os-i-tee] /ˌɪm pɪˌkyu niˈɒs ɪ ti/ (Show IPA),
destitute, poverty-stricken. See poor. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for impecuniosity
Historical Examples
  • They were certainly alike in one respect; namely, as regarded a chronic state of impecuniosity.

    Genius in Sunshine and Shadow Maturin Murray Ballou
  • Of the two great monopolies which the impecuniosity of Charles II.

    The Great Lone Land W. F. Butler
  • Not far from the limit of impecuniosity was Edison himself, as he landed in Boston in 1868 after this wintry ordeal.

    Edison, His Life and Inventions Frank Lewis Dyer and Thomas Commerford Martin
  • That this meeting deplores the impecuniosity which prevents the said Bennett from attending a Barber.

    The History of "Punch" M. H. Spielmann
  • Personally, I am convinced that impecuniosity and loss of credit will never bring the Germans to their knees.

    England and Germany Emile Joseph Dillon
  • He was an exceedingly neat man, and his care for his clothes and person had survived two years of impecuniosity.

    Jacob's Ladder E. Phillips Oppenheim
  • Such a career could not but be fruitful of the troubles, cares, dangers, and difficulties arising from impecuniosity.

    Curiosities of Impecuniosity H. G. Somerville
  • impecuniosity seems to have been a chronic state with the artist and sometimes to have pressed hard upon him.

  • He was told too that Lady Augustus was much harassed by impecuniosity.

    The American Senator Anthony Trollope
  • He was poorly paid, and often reduced to abject poverty by lack of engagements, or by the impecuniosity of managers.

    The Honor of the Name Emile Gaboriau
British Dictionary definitions for impecuniosity


without money; penniless
Derived Forms
impecuniously, adverb
impecuniousness, impecuniosity (ˌɪmpɪkjuːnɪˈɒsɪtɪ) noun
Word Origin
C16: from im- (not) + -pecunious, from Latin pecūniōsus wealthy, from pecūnia money
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 impecuniosity



"lacking in money," 1590s, from assimilated form of in- "not, opposite of" (see in- (1)) + Latin pecuniosus "rich," from pecunia "money, property" (see pecuniary). Related: Impecuniously; impecuniosity.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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