poor as a church mouse
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*poor as a church mouseand *poor as church mice
very poor. (*Also: as ~.) My aunt is as poor as a church mouse. The Browns are poor as church mice.
poor as a church mouseOLD-FASHIONED
If someone is as poor as a church mouse, they have very little money. I was as poor as a church mouse, but I bought that wreck of a car. I suspect we'll continue to be poor as church mice. Note: Mice living in a church are unlikely to find much to eat as there is no kitchen or food cupboard.
poor as a church mouse (or as church mice)extremely poor.
Church mice may be considered to be particularly poor or deprived in that they do not have the opportunity to find pickings from a kitchen or larder.