land poor

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English[edit]

Alternative forms[edit]

Adjective[edit]

land poor (comparative more land poor, superlative most land poor)

  1. (US, idiomatic) In a condition of poverty as a result of inability to meet tax payments or other financial requirements for one's land holdings.
    • 1900, Charles W. Chesnutt, The House Behind The Cedars, ch. 15:
      "I was offered a thousand acres, the other day, at twenty-five cents an acre," remarked the doctor. "The owner is so land-poor that he can't pay the taxes."
    • 1913, Jack London, The Valley of the Moon, ch. 18:
      [A]ll the rest of the surrounding land was owned by a Frenchman. . . . He was a land-miser. With no business capacity, old and opinionated, he was land poor, and it was an open question which would arrive first, his death or bankruptcy.
    • 1924, Ambrose Elliott Gonzales, "The Quest of the Land" in The Captain: Stories of the Black Border (1972 reprint edition by Ayer Publishing), ISBN 9780836989694, p. 111:
      Altho' most of the planters were "land poor" and burdened by the heavy taxes of "Reconstruction," and altho' many Negroes, having abandoned hope of "forty acres and a mule" from the Federal Government, were now ready to buy ten acres and an ox, the sale of land to Negroes was generally reprobated.
    • 2011, Irene Brand, Song of her Heart, ISBN 9781459210363, ch. 9:
      Most ranchers are land poor—lots of land, but not much money.

See also[edit]