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eleemosynary

Definition from Dictionary, a free dictionary
The hardest habit of all to break is the terrible habit of happiness.
Theodosia Garrison
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English

Alternative forms

Etymology

From Mediaeval Latin eleemosynarius (alms dispenser), from Late Latin eleemosyna (alms), from Ancient Greek ἐλεημοσύνη (eleēmosynē), alms), from ἐλεέω (eleëō), I have mercy), from ἔλεος (eleos), pity).

Compare Italian elemosina.

Pronunciation

Adjective

eleemosynary (comparative {{{1}}}, superlative {{{2}}})

Positive
eleemosynary

Comparative
{{{1}}}

Superlative
{{{2}}}

  1. Relating to charity, alms, or almsgiving; intended for the distribution of charity;
    • 1991, Washington Post, October 27,
      Amidst all this, the legal business, the acquiring of land, the construction of the Montgomery Block, Billings had generosity and time to support the founding of the University of California and a half dozen churches, schools, orphan asylums and other eleemosynary institutions.
  2. Given in charity or alms; having the nature of alms; as, eleemosynary assistance.
    • 1749, Henry Fielding, The History of Tom Jones, a Foundling, Book I ch i,
      An author ought to consider himself, not as a gentleman who gives a private or eleemosynary treat, but rather as one who keeps a public ordinary, at which all persons are welcome for their money.
  3. Supported by charity; as, eleemosynary poor.

Translations

Noun

Singular
eleemosynary

Plural
eleemosynaries

eleemosynary (eleemosynaries)
  1. (obsolete) A beggar

Related terms

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