What does “squalor” mean? (With a quiz question!)

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What does “squalor” mean?

Capsule Hotel Capsule in Akihabara, Japan

Part of Speech: noun

Pronunciations: IPA: /’skwa.lər/ Glossary-style: [SKWAH-lur]

Definition: filth; extreme dirtiness.

Example: Life in the shantytown was not all bad; yes, there was the poverty and squalor that usually accompanies it, but there was also great life and character, and always something fun to do.

Practice vocab quiz for “squalor”

1. Of the following, which would best be most likely to be referred to as squalor?
(A) A five-star hotel in Monaco
(B) An abandoned building that is inhabited by squatters in New York City and is not tended to by the city or the people who sleep there
(C) A capsule hotel in Tokyo, in which guests have only enough space to sleep, but not to walk around
(D) A “dude ranch” in Texas, where paying guests work as ranchers (or “cowboys”) as a vacation
(E) A youth hostel in Europe, which provides inexpensive accommodations to travelers

2. squalor most nearly means
(A) squeals, especially cacophonous ones
(B) squid ink
(C) squalidity or really, really bad dirtiness
(D) squeaky cleanliness
(E) squinting


One Response

  1. Squalor defines
    – the condition or quality of being squalid
    – disgusting dirt and filth

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