Word of the Day Archive
Monday June 30, 2008
indigent \IN-dih-juhnt\ , adjective:
Extremely poor; not having the necessities of life, such as food, clothing and shelter.
That which goes under the general Name of Charity... consists in relieving the Indigent.
-- Joseph Addison, The Spectator
Long-term reliance on Government benefits is corrupting for the well-to-do and the indigent alike, Mr. Longman argues.
-- Nicholas Eberstadt, "The Great Chain Letter", review of The Return Of Thrift, by Phillip Longman, New York Times, August 4, 1996
In a landmark case 35 years ago, Gideon v Wainwright, a unanimous Supreme Court ruled that indigent defendants must be provided with a lawyer at state expense because there could be no fair trial in a serious criminal case without one.
-- "Too poor to be defended", The Economist, April 9, 1998
Indigent derives from Latin indigens, indigent-, present participle of indigere, "to need."