The Meaning of Harlot: What It Is and How To Use It

Do you know the definition of harlot? This article will provide you with all of the information you need on the word harlot, including its definition, etymology, usage, example sentences, and more!

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What does the word harlot mean?

According to Collins English Dictionary and the American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language, the word harlot is a noun that means female prostitute. This word is considered archaic and old fashioned. This person is considered of low conduct or low birth. Harlot is two syllables – har-lot, and the pronunciation of harlot is hɑrlət.

Words that mean harlot can also be found in many other languages. You may notice that some of these translations look very similar to the word harlot. This is likely because they are from a similar root or common origin. Often, words of a similar root will look and sound similarly or be cognates to each other. The below word lists of translations is provided by Word Sense.

  •  Portuguese: puta‎ (fem.), meretriz‎ (fem.), messalina‎ (fem.), cortesã‎ (fem.) , prostituta‎ (fem.), rameira‎ (fem.), peripatética‎ (fem.), mulher da vida‎ (fem.), mulher de vida fácil‎ (fem.), mulher pública‎ (fem.).
  •  French: prostituée‎ (fem.), putain‎ (fem.), catin‎ (fem.), pute‎ (fem.), fille de joie‎ (fem.)
  •  Persian: فاحشه‎ (fâheše), بلایه‎ (balâye)
  •  Bulgarian: блудница‎ (fem.), проститутка‎ (fem.)
  •  Telugu: లంజ‎ (lanja)
  •  Scottish Gaelic: strìopach‎ (fem.), siùrsach‎ (fem.)
  •  Welsh: putain‎ (fem.)
  •  Russian: шлю́ха‎ (fem.)
  •  German: Dirne‎ (fem.), Hure‎ (fem.), Nutte‎ (fem.)
  •  Italian: meretrice‎ (fem.), puttana‎ (fem.)
  •  Danish: skøge‎ (common)
  •  Greek: καριόλα‎ (fem.)
  •  Dutch: hoer‎ (fem.), prostituee‎ (fem.)
  •  Latin: scortum‎ (neut.)
  •  Spanish: puta‎ (fem.), golfa‎ (fem.), ramera‎ (fem.)
  •  Irish: striapach‎ (fem.), drúth‎ (fem.)

What are synonyms and antonyms of harlot?

There are a plethora of different words that one can use in place of the word harlot. These are known as synonyms, which are words and phrases that have the same meaning as another word or phrase. Synonyms are very useful to know if you are trying to expand your vocabulary or if you are trying to avoid repeating yourself. This list of synonyms for the word harlot is provided by Power Thesaurus.

  •  jade
  •  fancy woman
  •  wanton
  •  courtesan
  •  erring sister
  •  slapper
  •  bawd
  •  white slave
  •  demimonde
  •  drab
  •  woman of the streets
  •  bitch
  •  hetaera
  •  easy woman
  •  jezebel
  •  moll
  •  call-girl
  •  daughter of joy
  •  grande horizontale
  •  call girl
  •  cunt
  •  brass nail
  •  working girl
  •  slattern
  •  baggage
  •  trull
  •  lady of pleasure
  •  poule
  •  prostitutes
  •  tarts
  •  prostitute
  •  fallen
  •  paphian
  •  prostituting
  •  trollop
  •  sex worker
  •  tart
  •  on the town
  •  member of the oldest profession
  •  prostitution
  •  concubine
  •  escort
  •  lady of the evening
  •  cocotte
  •  street-walking
  •  fallen woman
  •  whoredom
  •  fornicatress
  •  hussy
  •  demimondaine
  •  hustler
  •  puta
  •  minx
  •  sporting lady
  •  hooker
  •  cyprian
  •  lady in red
  •  wench
  •  female prostitute
  •  prostituted
  •  fille de joie
  •  floozy
  •  meretrix
  •  whores
  •  kept woman
  •  harlotry
  •  strumpet
  •  lady of the night
  •  bimbo
  •  woman on the game
  •  woman of the night
  •  molly
  •  demi-mondaine
  •  tramp
  •  pro
  •  whore
  •  unfortunate woman
  •  camp follower
  •  painted woman
  •  scarlet woman
  •  streetwalker
  •  street girl
  •  vamp
  •  promiscuous woman
  •  woman of ill repute
  •  chippy
  •  demirep
  •  loose woman
  •  lady of easy virtue
  •  bangtail
  •  b-girl
  •  woman of the street
  •  sex saint
  •  old toy
  •  quean
  •  floozie
  •  ho
  •  doxy
  •  adulteress
  •  roundheel
  •  fancy lady
  •  slut

There are also numerous different words that mean the opposite of the word harlot. These are called antonyms. Antonyms are also very useful to know if you are looking to expand your vocabulary. This list of antonyms for the word harlot is also provided by Power Thesaurus.

  •  priggish person
  •  monogamy
  •  coquette
  •  stuffed shirt
  •  faithful female
  •  moral fanatic
  •  religious female
  •  religionist
  •  saint
  •  virgin wife
  •  prig
  •  nice nelly
  •  pedant
  •  asexual female
  •  formalist
  •  fanatic
  •  puritan
  •  wowser
  •  goody-goody
  •  purist
  •  killjoy
  •  moral zealot
  •  bluenose
  •  honourable woman
  •  mannerist
  •  schoolmarm
  •  maiden
  •  moralist
  •  puritanical
  •  maid
  •  monogamous female
  •  blue stocking
  •  holy willie
  •  upright person
  •  miss prim
  •  holy joe
  •  spinster
  •  zealot
  •  puritans
  •  grundy
  •  goody two-shoes
  •  victorian
  •  tomboy
  •  prude
  •  old maid
  •  prudish
  •  monk
  •  pietist
  •  dogmatist
  •  virtuous person
  •  excessively modest person

What is the origin of the word harlot?

According to Etymonline, the word harlot has been used since the late 12c, and comes from the Old French herlot, Old French arlot, and Old Provençal arlot. This has cognates in the Old Spanish arlote and Old Italian arlotto. This word for an unchaste woman is of uncertain origin, but has been used in pejorative senses since 14c or early 15c.

How can the word harlot be used in a sentence?

There are many different ways in which the word harlot can be used in a sentence. This is a very versatile word that one will commonly hear. Using words in a sentence is a great way to memorize their definitions, as is using flashcards or quizzes to test your knowledge. Try using this word of the day in a sentence today! Below are several examples of harlot to get you started with using this new word.

The talented harlot Isabel was destined for doom, but she went from wearing cheap jade to diamonds when she became a television star, no longer the all time harlot of the world. 

While people called the harlot as such as an insult because of her sexual availability and servitude, she had the enjoyment of freedom of voice with the people she slept with, even if it was a lot of men.

In the olden days of sexist ideas, women’s value was not in their education level, but in their marriage. If a woman’s life was filled with her choice of sexual partners and many different partners in her casual sexual relations, she was considered a harlot. The only difference between her and insecure women was not their worth, but their confidence. A woman’s role was in the home.

The fair was filled of many an idle rogue, from actors to jugglers to jesters to harlots in the chambers. Many a man of no fixed occupation took up shop at the fair. 

Thy kinsman the knave is a lecherous man. The young man decided to cheat on his common woman with a harlot for hire. Thy face talls be you did not know. I salute you.

Overall, the word harlot (adj.) means a loose woman. This word is French in origin.


  1. Harlot synonyms – 409 Words and Phrases for Harlot | Power Thesaurus 
  2. Prude synonyms – 90 Words and Phrases for Prude | Power Thesaurus 
  3. harlot: meaning, origin, translation | Word Sense 
  4. Harlot definition and meaning | Collins English Dictionary 
  5. harlot | Origin and meaning of harlot | Online Etymology Dictionary