panhandling

[ pan-han-dl ]SEE DEFINITION OF panhandling
Roget's 21st Century Thesaurus, Third Edition Copyright © 2013 by the Philip Lief Group.

WORD ORIGIN

"something resembling the handle of a pan," 1851, from pan (n.) + handle (n.). Especially in reference to geography, originally American English, from 1856, in reference to Virginia (now West Virginia; Florida, Texas, Idaho, Oklahoma, and Alaska also have them). Meaning "an act of begging" is attested from 1849, perhaps from notion of arm stuck out like a panhandle, or of one who handles a (beggar's) pan.

Roget's 21st Century Thesaurus, Third Edition Copyright © 2013 by the Philip Lief Group.