vagabond

vagabond, vagrant, truant, tramp, bum, hobo mean a person who wanders at will or as a habit.
Vagabond may apply to a homeless wanderer lacking visible means of support
{

apprehend all nightwalkers . . . vagabonds and disorderly persons— Philadelphia Ordinances

}
but more often it lacks derogatory implications and emphasizes the mere fact of wandering and implies a carefree fondness for a roaming life
{

Rousseau . . . that young vagabond of genius— L. P. Smith

}
{

an exquisite defense of the fine art of irresponsible travel, and an encomium on the "cultured vagabond"—Nock

}
Vagrant is more likely to imply disreputableness and in its common legal use it denotes a person without fixed or known residence whose habitS or acts are such that he is likely to become a public menace or a public charge
{

arrested as a vagrant

}
{

the jail is the winter home of many vagrants

}
Even in more general use the term tends to carry stronger implications of disreputableness and waywardness than vagabond every beggar, vagrant, exile-by-choice and peregrine-at-large .... This whole hard-up population— Pynchon
{

a chronic vagrant from the spirit's home— Sapir

}
Truant carries as its strongest implication the habit of wandering away from where one ought to be or of loitering when one ought to be elsewhere and especially at school
{

I have a truant been to chivalry— Shak.

}
{

by truant we mean a boy of school age who intentionally stays away from school for no other reason than that he does not wish to go— Powers & Witmer

}
Tramp is the ordinary and generally derogatory word for one who leads a wandering life; it can apply to any such person whether he moves about in search of work, especially seasonal work, or whether he lives by beggary and thievery
{

whoever, not being under seventeen, a blind person or a person asking charity within his own town, roves about from place to place begging, or living without labor or visible means of support, shall be deemed a trampGeneral Laws of the Commonwealth of Mass.

}
{

a distinct class of these gentlemen tramps, young men no longer young, who wouldn't settle down, who disliked polite society and the genteel conventions— Santayana

}
Bum basically applies to a lazy, idle, and often drunken, good-for-nothing, who will not work but habitually sponges on others
{

dwells in a black-and-white world where a guy is either your pal or probably a bumHal Boyle

}
{

the local ne'er-do-well, the traditional village bum

}
But bum, especially when qualified, may denote one who wanders in pursuit of a particular occupation or activity
{

fruit bums who follow the harvests north

}
{

a ski bum

}
Hobo is often distinguished from tramp, sometimes in terms of willingness to work, sometimes in terms of methods of travel, the tramp being then taken as one who typically tramps the roads, the hobo as one who typically rides surreptitiously on freight trains. A common application of hobo is to the migratory worker who roves about fol-lowing such seasonal occupations as harvesting and crop picking
{

hoboes are traveling workers, tramps are traveling shirkers and bums are stationary shirkers— Cleveland Plain Dealer

}
{

in Western parlance a hobo is not a tramp. A hobo is a migratory laborer, who carries his blankets on his back, looking for work— World's Work

}
Analogous words: wanderer, roamer, rover (see corresponding verbs at WANDER)

New Dictionary of Synonyms. 2014.

Synonyms:

Look at other dictionaries:

  • vagabond — vagabond, onde [ vagabɔ̃, ɔ̃d ] adj. et n. • 1382; bas lat. vagabundus, de vagari « errer » → vaguer I ♦ Adj. 1 ♦ Littér. Qui mène une vie errante. Peuples vagabonds. ⇒ nomade. ♢ Par ext. Une vie, une existence vagabonde, où l on se déplace, où l …   Encyclopédie Universelle

  • Vagabond — may refer to:*Vagabond (person), an itinerant personIn music: * Vagabond (band), a rock band fronted by Jorn Lande * Vagabond (song), a song by Australian band Wolfmother * Vagabond (album), an album by Tony Sheridan *Jimmy James and The… …   Wikipedia

  • vagabond — VAGABÓND, Ă, vagabonzi, de, adj., s.m. şi f. (Om sau animal) care rătăceşte fără rost pe drumuri, care hoinăreşte fără ţintă; (om) fără ocupaţie stabilă, fără domiciliu fix. ♦ (Om) de nimic, fără căpătâi. – Din fr. vagabond, lat. vagabundus. cf.… …   Dicționar Român

  • vagabond — vagabond, onde (va ga bon, bon d ; au XVIIe siècle, Chifflet, Gramm. p. 227, dit qu on prononce vacabond, prononciation que Marguerite Buffet, Observ. p. 129, rejette) adj. 1°   Qui erre çà et là. •   Qu il coure vagabond de province en province …   Dictionnaire de la Langue Française d'Émile Littré

  • Vagabond — Vag a*bond, a. [F., fr. L. vagabundus, from vagari to stroll about, from vagus strolling. See {Vague}.] 1. Moving from place to place without a settled habitation; wandering. Vagabond exile. Shak. [1913 Webster] 2. Floating about without any… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Vagabond — Vag a*bond, n. One who wanders from place to place, having no fixed dwelling, or not abiding in it, and usually without the means of honest livelihood; a vagrant; a tramp; hence, a worthless person; a rascal. [1913 Webster] A fugitive and a… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Vagabond — Vag a*bond, v. i. To play the vagabond; to wander like a vagabond; to stroll. [1913 Webster] On every part my vagabonding sight Did cast, and drown mine eyes in sweet delight. Drummond. [1913 Webster] …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Vagabond — ist der Name eines japanischen Manga, siehe Vagabond (Manga) einer britischen Popband, siehe Vagabond (Band) Diese Seite ist eine Begriffsklärung zur Unterscheidung mehrerer mit demselben Wort bezeichneter Begriffe …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • vagabond — Vagabond, [vagab]onde. adj. Qui erre çà & là. Homme vagabond. femme vagabonde. Il se dit aussi des choses. Course vagabonde. Il est quelquefois subst. & alors il se prend tousjours en mauvaise part. C est un vagabond. les faineans & les vagabonds …   Dictionnaire de l'Académie française

  • vagabond — [adj] unsettled; vagrant aimless, destitute, down and out*, drifting, errant, fancyfree*, fly by night*, footloose*, idle, itinerant, itinerate, journeying, mendicant, migratory, moving, nomadic, perambulant, perambulatory, peripatetic, prodigal …   New thesaurus


Share the article and excerpts

Direct link
Do a right-click on the link above
and select “Copy Link”

We are using cookies for the best presentation of our site. Continuing to use this site, you agree with this.