• (RP, America) IPA: /ˈveɪ.ɡɹənt/

vagrant (plural vagrants)

  1. A person without a home; a wanderer.
    Every morning before work, I see that poor vagrant around the neighborhood begging for food.
    • 1785, William Cowper, “The Garden”, in The Task, a Poem, in Six Books. By William Cowper [...] To which are Added, by the Same Author, An Epistle to Joseph Hill, Esq. Tirocinium, or a Review of Schools, and The History of John Gilpin, London: Printed for J[oseph] Johnson, No. 72 St. Paul's Church-Yard, OCLC 221351486 ↗; republished as The Task. A Poem. In Six Books. To which is Added, Tirocinium: or, A Review of Schools, new edition, Philadelphia, Pa.: Printed for Thomas Dobson, bookseller, in Second-street, second door above Chestnut-street, 1787, OCLC 23630717 ↗, page 87 ↗:
      'Tis the cruel gripe, / That lean hard-handed poverty inflicts, / The hope of better things, the chance to win, / The wiſh to ſhine, the thirſt to be amus'd, / That at the found of Winter's hoary wing, / Unpeople all our counties, of ſuch herds, / Of flutt'ring, loit'ring, cringing, begging, looſe, / And wanton vagrants, as make London, vaſt / And boundless as it is, a crowded coop.
  2. (biology, especially, ornithology) An animal, typically a bird, found outside its species’ usual range.
  3. A widely-distributed Asian butterfly, Vagrans egista, family Nymphalidae.
Synonyms Translations Translations Translations Adjective


  1. Moving without certain direction; wandering; erratic; unsettled.
    • That beauteous Emma vagrant courses took.
    • 1881, Thomas Babington Macaulay, “[,_Ninth_Edition/Johnson,_Samuel Samuel Johnson]”, in Encyclopædia Britannica, Ninth Edition:
      While leading this vagrant and miserable life, Johnson fell in love.
  2. Wandering from place to place without any settled habitation.
    a vagrant beggar
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