Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. One who lives and works on land.
  • n. A fellow Jew who comes from the same district or town, especially in Eastern Europe.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. The opposite of a seaman. A person who does not go to sea, who lacks the skills of a sailor or who is uncomfortable on ships or boats.
  • n. A fellow Jew who comes from the same district or town, especially in Eastern Europe
  • n. Someone of a similar heritage or belief system
  • n. A military rank given to naval recruits

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. One who lives on the land; -- opposed to seaman.
  • n. A sailor on his first voyage.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. A man of the same land or country; a fellow-countryman.
  • n. One who lives on the land; one who has had little or no experience of the sea.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • n. a person who lives and works on land
  • n. an inexperienced sailor; a sailor on the first voyage

Etymologies

Yiddish, from Middle High German lantsman, countryman : lant, land (from Old High German; see lendh- in Indo-European roots) + man, man (from Old High German; see man-1 in Indo-European roots).
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
land's +‎ -man. In meanings 2 and 3, influenced by Yiddish לאַנדסמאַן (landsman). (Wiktionary)

Examples

  • There's a Yiddish word, "landsman" londs-man which, roughly translated, means "a fellow villager" - a stranger, perhaps, but still someone you welcome because you know they share a common connection in the village of your ancestors.

    WATCH: Hick Keeps Focus On Jobs As He's Sworn In

  • When I'm in the States and I hear someone speaking French with a Quebecois accent I want to yell out "landsman" even though my French is pretty terrible.

    Progressive Bloggers

  • a staunch sea-boat in rough weather, for she could tumble about as much as she pleased without causing much damage to her timbers or risk of her stability; and this roominess, besides, allowed good accommodation aft for a large number of passengers, although in this instance I was the single solitary "landsman" aboard -- that is, if a young shaver of thirteen can be dignified with such a high-sounding title!

    The White Squall A Story of the Sargasso Sea

  • Repeatedly, she appears in tight domestic spaces (chopping vegetables with fury, building a table), as she sorts through Chesapeake's offers, via a "landsman" who chooses to remain anonymously blurred during "negotiations.

    PopMatters

  • "Because he was one of us, landsman, son of the same soil, a member of the tribe."

    One Man's Derision Over the Decision

  • Kydd is the only major fictional nautical hero not born to the sea-faring life; in the real world, a pressed landsman who rose to captain in the Nelsonian era would be a remarkable creature indeed, and this should be the key to his character.

    At Journey's End, a Ship of the Line

  • A former slave from Virginia, he enlisted in the Navy as a landsman, but would sadly have little time to enjoy his freedom before sacrificing his life in the service of his country.

    Megan Smolenyak: Men of the USS Monitor: Daniel Moore, African American Sailor and Hero

  • In a moment the decks were in commotion, Johansen bellowing orders and the men pulling or letting go ropes of various sorts — all naturally confusing to a landsman such as myself.

    Chapter 3

  • And I thought I was safe in the hands of a landsman like you.

    CHAPTER XLV

  • The danger lay in the heavy fog which blanketed the bay, and of which, as a landsman, I had little apprehension.

    Chapter 1

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