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How to pronounce squalor (audio)


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Dictionary definition of squalor

A state of extreme dirtiness and poverty, typically associated with living conditions.
"The house was in a state of squalor after years of neglect."

Detailed meaning of squalor

This term can refer to physical conditions such as filth, debris, and decay, as well as social and economic conditions such as overcrowding, unemployment, and lack of basic services. Squalor is often associated with slums, ghettos, and other areas of urban blight, but it can also exist in rural or suburban areas. The term is often used to describe a situation of extreme neglect, both of people and of physical surroundings. The effects of squalor on human health and well-being can be severe, including increased risk of disease, depression, and other mental health problems. Overall, the term squalor is used to describe a state of extreme poverty and neglect, and is often associated with social and economic inequality.

Example sentences containing squalor

1. The slums were filled with squalor and poverty.
2. The squalor of the homeless encampment was heartbreaking.
3. The dilapidated building was a haven for rats and squalor.
4. The squalor of the alleyways was an unfortunate reality of the city.
5. The odor of squalor emanated from the rundown apartment building.
6. The refugee camp was a place of squalor and desperation.

History and etymology of squalor

The noun 'squalor' has its origins in Latin. It can be traced back to the Latin word 'squalere,' which meant 'to be rough or dirty.' In Latin, 'squalor' described a state of filth, dirtiness, or roughness. Over time, this word transitioned into Old French as 'esqualour,' and eventually, it entered Middle English as 'squalour,' where it retained its association with a state of extreme dirtiness and poverty, particularly in the context of living conditions. 'Squalor' aptly conveys the grim and sordid aspect of impoverished or neglected environments, highlighting the enduring link between the word's etymology and its contemporary meaning, which pertains to wretched and squalid living conditions.

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Further usage examples of squalor

1. The conditions in the prison were deplorable, with squalor everywhere.
2. The squalor of the neighborhood was a stark contrast to the nearby luxury hotel.
3. The animal shelter was filled with squalor and overcrowding.
4. The images of the squalor in the slums were seared into her memory.
5. The squalor of the dump site was overwhelming, with garbage piled high.
6. The abandoned house was in a state of squalor and decay.
7. The documentary exposed the shocking squalor in the slums.
8. He grew up in the squalor of a crowded tenement.
9. Their living conditions deteriorated into squalor.
10. The homeless shelter aimed to alleviate squalor.
11. Poverty often leads to a life of squalor.
12. They were trapped in the squalor of addiction.
13. The village endured years of squalor after the disaster.
14. Her heart went out to those trapped in squalor.
15. A campaign was launched to combat urban squalor.
16. The charity worked tirelessly to alleviate squalor.
17. He vowed to escape the cycle of squalor and poverty.
18. The journalist uncovered stories of squalor in the city.
19. The photos captured the heartbreaking squalor of their home.
20. They were born into a life of squalor and hardship.
21. Efforts to improve the neighborhood reduced squalor.
22. The authorities neglected the squalor in the refugee camp.
23. Generations of families endured squalor in the shantytown.
24. The mission was to provide relief from squalor and despair.
25. The squalor in the overcrowded prison shocked visitors.



filth, cleanliness, luxury, opulence


Suffix -or, GRE 12 (Graduate Record Examination), Decay and Degeneration, Alternative Lifestyles and Poverty

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