Definition from Wiktionary, the free dictionary
Jump to: navigation, search



From Middle English harlot, from Old French harlot, herlot, arlot (vagabond; tramp), of obscure origin. Likely ultimately of Germanic origin, either from a derivation of *harjaz (army; camp; warrior; military leader) or from a diminutive of *karilaz (man; fellow). Compare English carlot.


harlot (plural harlots)

  1. (derogatory, archaic) A female prostitute.
  2. (obsolete) A churl; a common man; a person, male or female, of low birth.
    • Geoffrey Chaucer, General Prologue.
      He was a gentil harlot and a kynde;
  3. (obsolete) A person given to low conduct; a rogue; a cheat; a rascal.
    (Can we find and add a quotation of Chaucer to this entry?)




harlot (third-person singular simple present harlots, present participle harloting or harlotting, simple past and past participle harloted or harlotted)

  1. To play the harlot; to practice lewdness.
    (Can we find and add a quotation of Milton to this entry?)



harlot (comparative more harlot, superlative most harlot)

  1. (obsolete) wanton; lewd; low; base
    • William Shakespeare, The Comedy of Errors: Act 5, scene 1, 204–205
      This day, great duke, she shut the doors upon me, / While she with harlots feasted in my house.