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1. a person who occupies property or land to which he has no legal title
2. (in Australia)
a. (formerly) a person who occupied a tract of land, esp pastoral land, as tenant of the Crown
b. a farmer of sheep or cattle on a large scale
3. (in New Zealand) a 19th-century settler who took up large acreage on a Crown lease



a farmer who seizes unsettled land without receiving permission to do so. Squatting was widespread in the British colonies of North America and, later, in the USA (until 1862), as well as in Australia and certain other countries. The practice was possible owing to the vast amount of available unsettled land. The practice was an important precondition for the development of rural capitalism following the farm economy line. [23–1491–]

References in periodicals archive ?
The internet is now littered with advice directing squatters on how to find a commercial abode.
A spokeswoman for the Antagonistic Collective Against Boredom (ACAB) said: "Bailiffs arrived and some intimidation was used to remove squatters from the building.
5, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- Sabre, a global travel technology company, has introduced a series of enhancements to its Hotel RFP solution including new squatter rate audit capabilities and a new portal where travel buyers and hotel suppliers can connect.
The squatters requested the army's presence to corroborate their case.
Summary: Police have used tear gas as they evict squatters from land in Chivay
Ad Hoc Property Management said it hopes to "deter squatters, thieves and vandals" by arranging for tenants to move into empty non-residential buildings.
The bench also directed that the bungalows and flats vacated by the squatters in the meantime should not be reallotted without informing it.
but Richard Madeley has just made a documentary on Britain's squatters and is still plainly horrified when he talks about the plight of one group he met.
Squatters opened its first brew pub in Salt Lake City in 1989.
SQUATTERS who have been occupying an historic Birmingham house have vowed to stay there until they are "dragged out" by council baliffs.
He added UK taxpayers' money would be wasted on processing squatters through the courts as well as police and councils having to use their resources on re-housing those who were evicted.
SQUATTERS will face up to six months in prison and so-called squatters' rights scrapped as it becomes a criminal offence in England and Wales tomorrow.