denizen

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English[edit]

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Etymology[edit]

From Middle English denisein, from Anglo-Norman denzein, from deinz (within), from Late Latin deintus (from within) (French dedans).

Pronunciation[edit]

Noun[edit]

denizen (plural denizens)

  1. An inhabitant of a place; one who dwells in.
    The giant squid is one of many denizens of the deep.
    • 1912: Edgar Rice Burroughs, Tarzan of the Apes, Chapter 6
      The cries of the gorilla proclaimed that it was in mortal combat with some other denizen of the fierce wood. Suddenly these cries ceased, and the silence of death reigned throughout the jungle.
    • Sir Walter Scott
      Denizens of their own free, independent state.
  2. One who frequents a place.
    The denizens of that pub are of the roughest sort.
  3. (UK, obsolete) A person with rights between those of naturalized citizen and resident alien (roughly permanent resident), obtained through letters patent.
    Though born in Iceland, he became a denizen of Britain after leaving Oxford.
  4. (biology) An animal or plant from a particular range or habitat.
    The bald eagle is a denizen of the northern part of the state.

Usage notes[edit]

As a British legal category, used between 13th and 19th century (mentioned but not used in 20th century), made obsolete by naturalisation – see denization.

Synonyms[edit]

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Related terms[edit]

Translations[edit]

The translations below need to be checked and inserted above into the appropriate translation tables, removing any numbers. Numbers do not necessarily match those in definitions. See instructions at Help:How to check translations.

Verb[edit]

denizen (third-person singular simple present denizens, present participle denizening, simple past and past participle denizened)

  1. (transitive, UK) To grant rights of citizenship to; to naturalize.
    He was denizened to Ireland after fleeing his home country.
    • Dryden
      As soon as denizened, they domineer.
  2. (transitive) To provide with denizens; to populate with adopted or naturalized occupants.
    • J. D. Hooker
      There were a few islets in the sand [] and these were at once denizened by various weeds.