• WordNet 3.6
    • adj penurious excessively unwilling to spend "parsimonious thrift relieved by few generous impulses","lived in a most penurious manner--denying himself every indulgence"
    • adj penurious not having enough money to pay for necessities
    • ***
Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
    • Penurious Destitute of money; suffering extreme want. "My penurious band."
    • Penurious Excessively sparing in the use of money; sordid; stingy; miserly. "A penurious niggard of his wealth."
    • Penurious Not bountiful or liberal; scanty. "Here creeps along a poor, penurious stream."
    • ***
Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
    • penurious Pertaining to or characterized by penury or want; stricken with poverty; indigent.
    • penurious Niggard; scanty; not bountiful or liberal.
    • penurious Excessively saving or sparing in the use of money; parsimonious to a fault; sordid: as, a penurious man.
    • penurious Nice and dainty.
    • penurious Synonyms Parsimonious, Penurious, Miserly, Close, Niggardly, Stingy, Mean, covetous, avaricious, illiberal, sordid, chary. The first seven words express the spirit or conduct of those who are slow to part with money or other valuable things. Parsimonious is perhaps the most general of these words, literally sparing to spend, but always careful and excessively sparing. Penurious means literally in penury, but always feeling and acting as though one were in poverty, saving beyond reason; the word is rather stronger than parsimonious, and has perhaps rather more reference to the treatment of others. One may be parsimonious or penurious, through habits formed in times of having little, without being really miserly. Miserly, feeling and acting like a miser, is generally applied to one who, having some wealth, clings to it for fear of poverty, or in provision for some possible exigency of the future, or especially for its own sake, as delighting in the mere possession of wealth. Close has the vigor of figurative use; it may be a shortening of close-fisted. Niggardly is the least limited to money, and has the most to do with others; it expresses a meanly parsimonious treatment of others, a neglectful, self-defeating, or stingy saving. Stingy expresses the most of opprobrium: as, Queen Elizabeth was called frugal by her friends, stingy by her enemies, and parsimonious by the rest of the world. It indicates a grudging, narrow-hearted or unreasonable parsimony in giving or providing. Mean shows a tendency toward emphasizing the idea of a close or narrow and mean-spirited handling of money. See avarice.
    • ***
Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
    • adj Penurious showing penury: not bountiful: too saving: sordid: miserly
    • ***


  • William Shakespeare
    “The weariest and most loathed worldly life, that age, ache, penury and imprisonment can lay on nature is a paradise, to what we fear of death.”


Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
From Penury
Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
Fr.,—L. penuria; Gr. peina, hunger, penēs, poor.


In literature:

They are prudent without being at all mean or penurious, and are fond of money without having a tittle of avarice.
"Impressions of America" by Tyrone Power
Second, be generous and do not show a stingy and penurious disposition when in the company of ladies.
"Searchlights on Health: Light on Dark Corners" by B.G. Jefferis
He was not penurious or mean in his wars.
"The Tyranny of the Dark" by Hamlin Garland
Thus whole families were orphaned and consigned to penury.
"Folkways" by William Graham Sumner
Your thousand pounds you will find safe in the bank, for penury would not have induced me to touch it.
"Japhet in Search of a Father" by Frederick Marryat
He went blind in 1620, and died in penury in 1627.
"The Story of Rouen" by Sir Theodore Andrea Cook
It will be a change for us both to come into five thousand a year after such penury.
"The Opal Serpent" by Fergus Hume
This antique cast always seems to promise ill-luck and penury.
"The Atlantic Monthly, Volume 14, No. 85, November, 1864" by Various
Not even to save those I love from penury will I accept your proposal.
"Bristol Bells" by Emma Marshall
He declared that he could have endured the calamity if penury had been all.
"Sir Walter Ralegh" by William Stebbing

In poetry:

If prest by penury severe,
In envious want we pine,
May Conscience whisper in our ear,
A poorer lot was Thine!
"Hymn 5. Christmas Day" by Reginald Heber
Chill penury and winter's power
Upon my soul so hard have prest,
That I would fain have seen no more
The red flow'rs that the meadows drest:
"Chill Penury And Winter's Power" by Walther von der Vogelweide
Thy parents therefore filially revere,
For the vast love they unto thee express'd:
The weight of penury ne'er let them bear,
Whilst thou'rt alive, and with a penny bless'd.
"The Duty Of Children To Their Parents" by Rees Prichard
But Knowledge to their eyes her ample page
Rich with the spoils of time did ne'er unroll;
Chill Penury repress'd their noble rage,
And froze the genial current of the soul.
"Elegy Written in a Country Churchyard" by Thomas Gray
The dauntless will that scorns threat'ning defeat,
And breaks thro' penury's strong prison bars;
Can plant on triumphs proud his tow'ring feet,
And walk a shining highway to the stars.
"A Dream Of Glory" by Albery Allson Whitman
See the small stream, that pours its murmuring tide
O'er some rough rock, that would its wealth display;
Displays it aught but penury and pride?
Ah! construe wisely what such murmurs say.
"Elegy X. To Fortune, Suggesting His Motive for Repining at Her Dispensations" by William Shenstone

In news:

Years ago, in my penurious and somewhat traumatic 20s, I got into the habit of collecting interior-design magazines.
HOW IS ONE to speak of the plunge from the 1920s into the 1930s—the toboggan slide, as it seemed, from affluence to penury.
I prefer the words penurious and parsimonious .
I prefer to think of myself as penurious or parsimonious .
I prefer the words penurious and parsimonious.
I prefer to think of myself as penurious or parsimonious.
Looking for a shortcut to penury .
PARIS—The mayor of a French town struggling with poverty is on a hunger strike in front of the National Assembly to protest what he calls "financial penury" and lack of support from the national government.
PARIS — The mayor of a French town struggling with poverty is on a hunger strike in front of the National Assembly to protest what he calls "financial penury" and lack of support from the national government.
Republican lawmakers have declared that President Barack Obama's new health-care law will literally bankrupt the nation, driving small businesses into ruin and millions of Americans into penury.