August 6, 2021

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Word of the Day: squalid

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: filthy, run-down and repulsive, caused by neglect or poverty

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The word squalid has appeared in 90 articles on NYTimes.com in the past year, including on Dec. 15 in “Trapped at Home in the Pandemic With Mold and a Leaky Roof” by Winnie Hu and Nate Schweber:

Aida Corporan has avoided the coronavirus by hunkering down in her apartment at the Bailey Houses, a public housing complex in the Bronx.

But she cannot get away from the health threat inside her own home: mold.

Ms. Corporan, who suffers from artery and kidney problems, said heavy rains have leaked into her bathroom from her building’s dilapidated roof and left behind mold on the walls that cannot be scrubbed away.

… Public housing tenants routinely complain about squalid living conditions, including frequent hot water outages, broken elevators, lead paint and rats. The problems have worsened in recent decades as the housing authority has struggled to get adequate federal funding to maintain its more than 300 developments.

Can you correctly use the word squalid in a sentence?

Based on the definition and example provided, write a sentence using today’s Word of the Day and share it as a comment on this article. It is most important that your sentence makes sense and demonstrates that you understand the word’s definition, but we also encourage you to be creative and have fun.

Then, read some of the other sentences students have submitted and use the “Recommend” button to vote for two original sentences that stand out to you.

If you want a better idea of how squalid can be used in a sentence, read these usage examples on Vocabulary.com.

If you enjoy this daily challenge, try using multiple Words of the Day in a 50-word story that you submit to our Monthly Vocabulary Challenge.

Students ages 13 and older in the United States and the United Kingdom, and 16 and older elsewhere, can comment. All comments are moderated by the Learning Network staff.


The Word of the Day has been provided by Vocabulary.com. Learn more and see usage examples across a range of subjects in the Vocabulary.com Dictionary. See every Word of the Day in this column.

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