What does destitute mean?

Definitions for destitute
ˈdɛs tɪˌtut, -ˌtyutdes·ti·tute

This dictionary definitions page includes all the possible meanings, example usage and translations of the word destitute.

Princeton's WordNet

  1. destitute, impoverished, indigent, necessitous, needy, poverty-strickenadjective

    poor enough to need help from others

  2. barren, destitute, devoid, free, innocentadjective

    completely wanting or lacking

    "writing barren of insight"; "young recruits destitute of experience"; "innocent of literary merit"; "the sentence was devoid of meaning"


  1. destituteadjective

    Lacking something; devoid; especially lacking money; poor, impoverished, poverty-stricken.

Samuel Johnson's Dictionary

  1. DESTITUTEadjective

    Etymology: destitutus, Latin.

    To forsake the true God of heaven, is to fall into all such evils upon the face of the earth, as men, either destitute of grace divine, may commit, or unprotected from above, may endure. Richard Hooker, b. v. s. 1.

    He will regard the prayer of the destitute, and not despise their prayer. Psal. cii. 17.

    Living turfs upon his body lay;
    This done, securely take the destin’d way
    To find the regions destitute of day. John Dryden, Æn. b. vi.

    Nothing can be a greater instance of the love that mankind has for liberty, than such a savage mountain covered with people, and the Campania of Rome, which lies in the same country, destitute of inhabitants. Joseph Addison, Remarks on Italy.

Webster Dictionary

  1. Destituteadjective

    forsaken; not having in possession (something necessary, or desirable); deficient; lacking; devoid; -- often followed by of

  2. Destituteadjective

    not possessing the necessaries of life; in a condition of want; needy; without possessions or resources; very poor

  3. Destituteverb

    to leave destitute; to forsake; to abandon

  4. Destituteverb

    to make destitute; to cause to be in want; to deprive; -- followed by of

  5. Destituteverb

    to disappoint

  6. Etymology: [L. destitutus, p. p. of destituere to set away, leave alone, forsake; de + statuere to set. See Statute.]

Chambers 20th Century Dictionary

  1. Destitute

    des′ti-tūt, adj. left alone: forsaken: in want, needy—v.t. to forsake: to deprive.—n. Destitu′tion, the state of being destitute: deprivation of office: poverty. [L. destituĕre, -ūtumde, away, and statuĕre, to place.]

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  1. Chaldean Numerology

    The numerical value of destitute in Chaldean Numerology is: 9

  2. Pythagorean Numerology

    The numerical value of destitute in Pythagorean Numerology is: 6

Examples of destitute in a Sentence

  1. Ruben Garcia:

    The people that are going to be there are immigrants. They're refugees. Many of them are homeless. They're destitute and they're afraid.

  2. Liza Schuster:

    Aside from the very wealthy, the only ones who are not thinking of leaving are the destitute, part of it is driven by an unrealistic idea of life in Europe, but a huge part is driven by how difficult it is in Afghanistan.

  3. Francis Bacon:

    The worst solitude is to be destitute of sincere friendship.

  4. Isabella Castragiovanni:

    Lack of access to even basic livelihood opportunities and diminished access to food and other assistance will make these families even more vulnerable and destitute and children will certainly become even more at risk, ...we shouldn't leave millions of children not only without hope, but without basic means to survive.

  5. Dan Sherman:

    Research shows that financial distress is [at least] equal to the fear of dying from the disease, some who are diagnosed with cancer do everything they possibly can, and go through a lot of [financial] resources. Others try to keep their families from becoming destitute.

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"destitute." Definitions.net. STANDS4 LLC, 2023. Web. 7 Jun 2023. <https://www.definitions.net/definition/destitute>.

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1 Comment
  • Barbara Wood
    Barbara Wood
    I really appreciate the batch of words you've been sending lately. They're words commonly used in news articles, reports, etc., but also words that the general public, particulary less educated folk, might appreciate having clarified. I think of words like 'averse' and 'adverse' -- two words that people often confuse, and need to have clarified. Thank you. 
    LikeReply6 years ago

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