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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 procedure should be able to identify the real from the professional squatters.
Last November, squatters were evicted from Chorlton Baths after filling up the swimming pool and bringing the sauna back into use.
In squatter communities, sanitation and cleanliness is wanting, sickness, crime and drugs are rampant.
Squatters had put cooking gas tanks on the railing of a first-floor balcony, apparently ready to be opened to be used as makeshift flamethrowers, or dropped onto the square, Reuters photographers said on Wednesday.
The determination of priority and superiority of possession is a serious and urgent matter that cannot be left to the squatters to decide.
Applied to the context of squatting, I argue that squatters enter into a political conflict with the state and landowners who enforce the rights of the propertied above the property-less.
4 Squatters were among those who became part of this teleological trajectory towards full citizenship.
Seven Buddhist monks say will help squatters to get a solution
A spokeswoman for the Antagonistic Collective Against Boredom (ACAB) said: "Bailiffs arrived and some intimidation was used to remove squatters from the building.
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.