Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition.

  • adjective Of, relating to, or befitting a beggar; very poor.
  • adjective So mean, petty, or paltry as to deserve contempt.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • Meanly; indigently; despicably.
  • In the condition of or becoming a beggar; extremely indigent; poor; mean; contemptible: used of persons and things.
  • Of or for beggars.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English.

  • adjective In the condition of, or like, a beggar; suitable for a beggar; extremely indigent; poverty-stricken; mean; poor; contemptible.
  • adjective obsolete Produced or occasioned by beggary.
  • adverb In an indigent, mean, or despicable manner; in the manner of a beggar.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

  • adjective In the manner of a beggar.
  • adjective Fit for a beggar.
  • adjective By extension, inadequate or meagre.
  • adverb In an indigent, mean, or despicable manner; in the manner of a beggar.

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

  • adjective marked by poverty befitting a beggar
  • adjective (used of sums of money) so small in amount as to deserve contempt

Etymologies

Sorry, no etymologies found.

Examples

  • V. i.45 (123,6) A beggarly account of empty boxes] Dr. Warburton would read, a _braggartly_ account; but _beggarly_ is probably right: if the

    Notes to Shakespeare, Volume III: The Tragedies

  • Simon is an incarnation of what St. Paul calls the beggarly elements; Christ, of spirituality; the woman, of sin.

    The Atlantic Monthly, Volume 04, No. 22, August, 1859

  • The King had hitherto only given him what Frederick called a beggarly allowance of fifty thousand a year, and even that had not been made over to the prince unconditionally and forever.

    A History of the Four Georges, Volume II (of 4)

  • Rinaldo's men were lawless, and sometimes the supplies were not furnished in sufficient abundance, so that Rinaldo and his garrison got a bad name for taking by force what they could not obtain by gift; and we sometimes find Montalban spoken of as a nest of freebooters, and its defenders called a beggarly garrison.

    Legends of Charlemagne

  • Rinaldo's men were lawless, and sometimes the supplies were not furnished in sufficient abundance, so that Rinaldo and his garrison got a bad name for taking by force what they could not obtain by gift; and we sometimes find Montalban spoken of as a nest of freebooters, and its defenders called a beggarly garrison.

    The Age of Fable

  • For although we can perform outward works not commanded by God's Law [which Paul calls beggarly ordinances], yet the confidence that satisfaction is rendered God's Law [yea, that more is done than God demands] is vain and wicked.

    Apology of the Augsburg Confession

  • Mongol that, in the morning, the cattle should be at hand; that they would be better than those Johnny had seen; and that Johnny's "beggarly" price of one pound of gold for six cattle would be accepted.

    Panther Eye

  • The duties of this "hard-worked" functionary consist of the checking of the Parliamentary voters list of his ward, once every two years, and of acting as chief canvasser and election agent for the Ministerial candidate, who, however, is usually returned unopposed; and for these onerous duties he is rewarded by an ungrateful Government with the "beggarly" salary of �0 a year.

    Chapter XXIV

  • There is likewise a kind of beggarly princes in Europe, not able to make war by themselves, who hire out their troops to richer nations, for so much a day to each man; of which they keep three-fourths to themselves, and it is the best part of their maintenance; such are those in Germany and other northern parts of

    Gulliver's Travels

  • One Schygrai, a silly kind of beggarly baron, who was treated as a buffoon, was invited in the year 1743 to dine with Baron Pejaczewitz, when Trenck happened to be present.

    The Life and Adventures of Baron Trenck, Volume 1

Comments

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  • Though beggarly ends in -ly, it is an adjective, not a lack-linen adverb.

    December 29, 2011

  • The final "ly" in this case does not indicate an adverb, so exemplified by hernesheir , and also holds true for "niggardly," which also means "stingy."

    January 1, 2012