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

  • n. A colonial emigrant from Europe to America who paid for the voyage by serving for a specified period as a bondservant.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. An immigrant, generally from the 18th or 19th century, that gained passage to America by selling themselves as an indentured servant.
  • n. Someone who redeems oneself, such as from debt or servitude.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. One who redeems himself, as from debt or servitude.
  • n. Formerly, one who, wishing to emigrate from Europe to America, sold his services for a stipulated time to pay the expenses of his passage.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. One who redeemed himself or purchased his release from debt or obligation to the master of a ship by his services, or one whose services were sold to pay the expenses of his passage to America.


Sorry, no etymologies found.


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