follow Dictionary.com

Yours, Etc.: Origins and Uses of 8 Sign-Offs

lifer

[lahy-fer] /ˈlaɪ fər/
noun, Slang.
1.
a person sentenced to or serving a term of life imprisonment.
2.
a person committed to a professional lifetime career in the military.
3.
a person who has devoted a lifetime to a profession, occupation, or pursuit.
4.
  1. Also called life bird. a species of bird not seen previously and that will therefore be added to the bird watcher's life list.
  2. the sighting of a bird of a previously unseen species:
    It seems like forever since I've had a lifer!
Origin
1820-1830
1820-30; life + -er1
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
Cite This Source
British Dictionary definitions for life-bird

lifer

/ˈlaɪfə/
noun
1.
(informal) a prisoner sentenced to life imprisonment
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
Cite This Source
Word Origin and History for life-bird

lifer

n.

"prisoner serving a life sentence," 1830, from life (n.).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
Cite This Source
Slang definitions & phrases for life-bird

lifer

noun
  1. A convict serving a life sentence (1830+)
  2. A career Army officer: ''lifers'' (the contemptuous GI term for career officers) (WWII Army)

The Dictionary of American Slang, Fourth Edition by Barbara Ann Kipfer, PhD. and Robert L. Chapman, Ph.D.
Copyright (C) 2007 by HarperCollins Publishers.
Cite This Source

Word of the Day

Difficulty index for lifer

Some English speakers likely know this word

Word Value for life

7
8
Scrabble Words With Friends

Quotes with life-bird