Etymology
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penury (n.)

"extreme poverty, indigence, destitution," c. 1400, penurie, from Latin penuria "want, need; scarcity," related to pæne "nearly, almost, practically," which is of uncertain origin.

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Definitions of penury

penury (n.)
a state of extreme poverty or destitution;
Synonyms: indigence / need / pauperism / pauperization
From wordnet.princeton.edu