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1. A rude, boorish person. See Synonyms at boor.
2. A miserly person.
a. A ceorl.
b. A medieval English peasant.
[Middle English, from Old English ceorl, peasant.]
Word History: The Old English word ceorl (in which the c was pronounced (ch) as in modern English churl) designated a freeman of the lowest class—one who had a social position above a slave but below a thane. Ceorl comes from Germanic *karilaz, whose basic meaning is "old man." In Finnish, which is not a Germanic language, the Germanic word was borrowed and survives almost unchanged as karilas, "old man." The Old Norse descendant of the Germanic word, karl, means "old man, servant," and the Old High German equivalent, karal, meaning "man, lover, husband," has become the name Karl. The Germanic word also entered Old French as Charles, from which we have the name Charles. The Medieval Latin form Carolus is based on the Old High German karal. The fame of Carolus Magnus, "Charles the Great," or Charlemagne, added luster to the name Carolus, and the Slavic languages later borrowed the name as their general word for "king," korol' in Russian—and so, despite the gulf between a king and a churl, the Russsian korol and the Old English ceorl are related.
1. a surly ill-bred person
2. (Historical Terms) archaic a farm labourer
3. (Historical Terms) a variant spelling of ceorl
[Old English ceorl; related to Old Norse karl, Middle Low German kerle, Greek gerōn old man]
1. a rude, boorish, or surly person.
2. a peasant; rustic.
3. a niggard; miser.
[before 900; Middle English cherl, Old English ceorl man, freeman; c. Old Frisian tzerl, tzirl, Middle Low German kerle; akin to carl]
Switch to new thesaurus
|Noun||1.||churl - a crude uncouth ill-bred person lacking culture or refinement|
|2.||churl - a selfish person who is unwilling to give or spend|
hoarder - a person who accumulates things and hides them away for future use
pinchgut - a niggardly person who starves himself (and others)
|3.||churl - a bad-tempered person|