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I'm trying to concisely describe a fictional settlement which was rebuilt from the ruins of a city which once took its place. The only word I can think of which does a decent job at this is "ramshackle," but I'd like to have more than one adjective at my disposal, and ramshackle, in my mind, feels as though it's describing something more quaint than a large settlement. Also, most words I've found on services like thesaurus.com give words similar to "dilapidated," implying that age is the reason for the settlement's poor quality. I don't think this fits my description. Are there any words which do fit this?

Example sentence: "Built from the ruins of the city before it, the [word] settlement is prone to building collapses and lacks the infrastructure which most settlements of its size have."

  • In some contexts you might say it's a "Pheonix arisen from the ashes". – Hot Licks Nov 4 '19 at 18:41
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    The title asks for a verb for the rebuilding process, but the body of the question seems to after a noun for the leftovers of the former city (your term ruins is such a noun). Please clarify whether you’re looking for the verb or the noun. – Lawrence Nov 5 '19 at 0:40
  • Typo in my comment: “seems to be after ...” – Lawrence Nov 5 '19 at 11:02
  • Reconstituted applies to more than just condensed soup, but it tends to say more about the political and socio-economic redevelopment that the physical reconstruction from artifacts. Personally, I'd probably go with secondhand – Phil Sweet Nov 5 '19 at 13:13
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Here is an adjective given in Lexico

jerry-built
ADJECTIVE

Badly or hastily built with materials of poor quality.
The people living in small, jerry-built houses in the adjacent villages were easy victims of the waves.

This fits the situation you describe:

Built from the ruins of the city before it, the jerry-built settlement is prone to building collapses and lacks the infrastructure which most settlements of its size have.

I don't agree that your adjective dilapidated is apt. It would apply to the state of buildings before they are reconstructed.

  • Jerry-built works. And I realize that the wording of my question was a little confusing. I've reworded it to make it more inline with what I was thinking. – Steven Nov 4 '19 at 18:38
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As in: TFD adj. haphazard

"Built from the ruins of the city before it, the haphazard settlement is prone to building collapses and lacks the infrastructure which most settlements of its size have."

careless; slipshod

Haphazard is random, disorganized, slipshod, or hit-or-miss... and ramshackle!

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how about:

remains

noun

Usually remains. something that remains or is left.

or

remnants

noun

a remaining, usually small part, quantity, number, or the like.

a fragment or scrap.

a small, unsold or unused piece of cloth, lace, etc., as at the end of a bolt.

or

vestige

noun

a mark, trace, or visible evidence of something that is no longer present or in existence:

a surviving evidence or remainder of some condition, practice, etc.:

a very slight trace or amount of something:

Taken from Dictionary.com

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