Vagrancy is the condition of homelessness without regular employment or income. Vagrants usually live in poverty and support themselves by begging, garbage scraping, petty theft, temporary work, or welfare (where available).
Historically, vagrancy in Western societies was associated with petty crime, begging and lawlessness, and punishable by law by forced labor, forced military service, imprisonment, or confinement to dedicated labor houses.
A person who experiences this condition may be referred to as a vagrant, vagabond, rogue, tramp or drifter.
Both vagrant and vagabond ultimately derive from the Latin word vagari, meaning "wander". The term vagabond is derived from Latin vagabundus. In Middle English, vagabond originally denoted a person without a home or employment.
In modern societies, anti-homelessness legislation aims to both help and re-house homeless people on one side, and criminalize homelessness and begging on the other.
Tens of thousands of young people move from northern to southern Europe every summer, following the tourists and the fine weather, and intending to support themselves by begging. They consider begging a holiday job. Their demands strain local infrastructure, antagonize local inhabitants, and distract attention from the local homeless.