poor relation


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poor relation

A less desirable substitute for the genuine item. The cheap motorcycle jacket I bought is nice, but it is a poor relation of actual leather.
See also: poor, relation

poor relation

An inferior member of a group, as in Many regard Turkey as the poor relation in the European alliance. This expression, first recorded in 1720 for a family member in humble circumstances, began to be used figuratively in the mid-1900s.
See also: poor, relation

a poor relation

If you describe one thing as a poor relation of another, you mean that it is similar in some ways but not as good or as popular. Watercolour still seems somehow to be the poor relation of oil painting. Grapes for the table have become the poor relation of those used by the wine trade.
See also: poor, relation

poor relation

a person or thing that is considered inferior or subordinate to others of the same type or group.
1997 Independent on Sunday Many downhillers think of Nordic skiing as a poor relation—fit only for wimps who can't take speed.
See also: poor, relation

a poor reˈlation

somebody/something with less importance, respect or power than others: At the peace conference, our country was treated very much as the poor relation.
See also: poor, relation
References in classic literature ?
It is a melancholy truth that even great men have their poor relations. Indeed great men have often more than their fair share of poor relations, inasmuch as very red blood of the superior quality, like inferior blood unlawfully shed, WILL cry aloud and WILL be heard.
I need no blessings, but - but -' She stamped her foot at the poor relation. 'Take up the trays to the house.
Best of all, when the body was cleared, she cut out from the mass of poor relations that crowded the back of the buildings - house-hold dogs, we name them - a cousin's widow, skilled in what Europeans, who know nothing about it, call massage.
He is a kind, excellent, independent-spirited, fine-hearted, hospitable, liberal man (enthusiastic shouts from the poor relations, at all the adjectives; and especially at the two last).
The uninvited guest Free and easy manners Salutary jokes A prodigal son Exit of the glutton A sudden change in fortune Danger of a visit to poor relations Plucking of a prosperous man A vagabond toilet A substitute for the very fine horse Hard travelling The uninvited guest and the patriarchal colt A beggar on horseback A catastrophe Exit of the merry vagabond
He is very good to his poor relations: pensions several of the women, and is educating a young fellow at a good deal of expense.
There were no foreclosures of mortgages, no protested notes, no bills payable, no debts of honour in Typee; no unreasonable tailors and shoemakers perversely bent on being paid; no duns of any description and battery attorneys, to foment discord, backing their clients up to a quarrel, and then knocking their heads together; no poor relations, everlastingly occupying the spare bed-chamber, and diminishing the elbow room at the family table; no destitute widows with their children starving on the cold charities of the world; no beggars; no debtors' prisons; no proud and hard-hearted nabobs in Typee; or to sum up all in one word--no Money!
Poor relations are undeniably irritating,--their existence is so entirely uncalled for on our part, and they are almost always very faulty people.
All his poor relations, to whom he would never speak, except with a sneer, shot up into the sky like wonderful golden flowers with blossoms of fire.
Some of the higher scholars boarded in the Doctor's house, and through them I learned, at second hand, some particulars of the Doctor's history - as, how he had not yet been married twelve months to the beautiful young lady I had seen in the study, whom he had married for love; for she had not a sixpence, and had a world of poor relations (so our fellows said) ready to swarm the Doctor out of house and home.
The Blackburn manager views the UEFA Cup as being very much the poor relation of the Champions League and that taking part was a burden to their Premiership campaign.
Glyn Thornton, Merseyside regional organiser of the GMB, said: ``It appears local authority workers are being treated as the poor relation within the public sector.''
LIVERPOOL'S education chief claimed last night that English students are in danger of becoming the "poor relation" to their Welsh and Scottish counterparts.
Too often, the winter games are seen as the poor relation to the summer ones and competitors therefore have a much lower profile.
Special schools should not be viewed as a poor relation to mainstream schools, simply an alternative which some pupils may need for some or all of their school lives.