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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
Collins Discovery Encyclopedia, 1st edition © HarperCollins Publishers 2005
The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.



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–]

The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
References in periodicals archive ?
'My view is that we must have this special task force for us to look at how long it takes to solve this squatter problem,' he said when contacted.
The official was reacting to the plan of the government to relocate around 300,000 squatter families to pave the way for the cleanup of Manila Bay.
While the Court did not brand the plaintiff and the defendant in Pitargue as squatters, strictly speaking, their entry into the disputed land was illegal.
Squatters themselves also perceived their legacy as having begun in 1968, as Nick Wates, a squatter, explains in the introduction to Squatting: The Real Story (1980), 'Squatting is an ancient practice, and has occurred at some stage, in different forms, throughout the world.
Therefore we came to this Marichchikattu which is our original and traditional place of residence only to find our lands were declared as some form of a "reserved forest area" which clearly is not the case" squatters said.
The idea is that through their presence in the building, with lights going on and off and it being visibly occupied, any squatters will be deterred.
The companies' three founders--Jeff Polychronis and Peter Cole of Squatters and Greg Schirf of Wasatch--will retain some ownership in the company.
Martin Williamson, below, head of residential property at Latimer Hinks, said: "Mention squatters and most people think of someone who has made themselves at home in an empty property.
Twenty-first century squatters are educated and shrewd, nothing like the squatters of the Great Depression.
One former squatter is Swansea anarchist and Class War publisher Ian Bone, once dubbed the "most dangerous man in Britain".
The company has three successful and highly regarded restaurants in Chicago, New York and Las Vegas, all operating under the name "Japonais." The company recently completed an expensive, four-year legal battle to wrest the federal trademark registration for "Japonais" from a trademark squatter here in the U.S.