|Origin:||povre, from Latin pauper|
poor S1 W1 comparative poorer, superlative poorest
having very little money and not many possessions [≠ rich]:
Her family were so poor they couldn't afford to buy her new clothes.
an area where poor people lived
one of the poorest countries in the world
a poor part of Chicago (=where a lot of poor people live)
My grandparents grew up dirt poor (=very poor).
Many of the families are desperately poor.
not as good as it could be or should be:
The soil in this area is very poor.
poor rates of pay
He blames himself for the team's poor performance.
of poor quality (=not made well or not made of good materials)
The jacket was of very poor quality.
Her hearing is poor, so speak fairly loudly.
make/do a poor job of doing something
The builders did a really poor job of fixing our roof.
used to show sympathy for someone because they are so unlucky, unhappy etc:
sympathy[only before noun] spoken
Poor kid, he's had a rough day.
You poor thing, you've had a hard time of it, haven't you?
Poor old Ted was sick for weeks.
not good at doing something:
not good at something
a poor public speaker
He's poor at sports.
someone whose health is poor is ill or weak for a long period of time:
My parents are both in rather poor health.
lacking something that is needed:
The country is poor in natural resources.
the act of finishing a race, competition etc a long way behind the person ahead of you:
McLean won easily, and Benson was a poor second.
come (in) a poor second/third etc British English
The Socialists came a poor second with 26.5% of the vote.
used to say that someone is like a very famous performer, writer etc but is not as good as they are:
He was the poor man's Elvis Presley.
used to say that something can be used for the same purpose as something else, and is much cheaper:
Herring is the poor man's salmon.
10 British English
someone or something that is not treated as well as other members of a group or is much less successful than they are
poor relation of
Theatre musicians tend to be the poor relations of the musical profession.
➔ be in bad/poor tasteat taste1 (6), poorlyWORD FOCUS: poor
be hard up/be broke also be skint BrE informal to have very little money at the present time and be unable to buy the things that you want
destitute having no money and nowhere to live, especially because something terrible has happened
poverty-stricken very poor