Definition of mendicity in US English:



  • The condition or activities of a beggar.

    • ‘Rome and the Campagna have been afflicted, from time immemorial, by two plagues, mendicity and brigandage, which after having infected the district with more or less violence for nearly twenty centuries, have been finally thoroughly extirpated by the Italian national government, and relegated to a place among the legends of the past.’
    • ‘Both colonial and republican administrators believed that the Poor House could serve to eradicate mendicity.’
    • ‘From what has just been detailed, it will be seen how amazing is the extent of pauperism and mendicity.’
    • ‘The Constituent Assembly set up a committee on mendicity which collected impressive information on the scale of the problem.’
    • ‘Their goals, Arrom argues, exemplified the Bourbon modernizing project in their optimism that mendicity could be eradicated, and in their utilitarian, disciplinary, and civilizing intent.’
    poverty, penury, destitution, ruin, ruination, indigence, impecuniousness, impoverishment, need, neediness, privation, want, hardship, distress, difficulties, dire straits, reduced circumstances, straitened circumstances, mendicancy, vagrancy
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Late Middle English: from Old French mendicite, from Latin mendicitas, from mendicus ‘beggar’.