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    #1

    usurer

    Can we say "this bank is a real usurer"?
    Any other words?

  1. BobK's Avatar
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    #2

    Re: usurer

    Quote Originally Posted by English4everyone View Post
    Can we say "this bank is a real usurer"?
    Any other words?
    A usurer is a person who lends money and charges interest on the loan. Banks do that, sometimes. I'm not sure what you're trying to say...

    b

    PS Do you speak French? The word usurier is more pejorative than the English 'usurer'.
    Last edited by BobK; 06-Jan-2012 at 13:05. Reason: Added PS

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    #3

    Re: usurer

    "Usury" is defined as a crime when someone charges excessive interest on a loan. (The original idea was any interest at all, but that was before opportunity cost was understood.)

    "Usury" is a fairly uncommon word to hear. "Usurer" even more rare. I would avoid its use.

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    #4

    Re: usurer

    You could call them usurious as it usually suggests charging excessive interest, but it is not a common term.

  2. emsr2d2's Avatar
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    #5

    Re: usurer

    When you say something like "somebody is a real .........", we expect the next word to be something rather negative, or rude.

    He's a real b*stard.
    She's a real so-and-so.

    Even though the word "usurer" describes someone rather unpleasant (a person who charges excessive interest on a loan), we don't usually use it as an insult. You could say something like "That bank is behaving like an absolute usurer" but that would still require the listener to know the meaning of the word. I would go so far as to say that less than 25% of the BrE speakers I know could not give you the definition.

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    #6

    Re: usurer

    'That bank charges more interest than Shylock.'

    'That bank acts like a loan shark.'

    Rover

  3. BobK's Avatar
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    #7

    Re: usurer

    (To explain for students, the Shakespeare character Shylock - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia is often cited as an example of the less pleasant face of money-lending.)

    b

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