Simple Definition of exorbitant
: going far beyond what is fair, reasonable, or expected : too high, expensive, etc.
Examples of exorbitant in a sentence
The citizens of Xiaoli Village move lazily, with a languor born of chronic underemployment. They are farmers by tradition, but exorbitant taxes have leached any profitability out of their profession. —Hannah Beech, Time, 27 Oct. 2003
As with the black truffle, foie gras is as exorbitant ($52 a pound) as it is decadent (one gram of foie gras can reportedly be 900 calories). —Heather Morgan, Traveler, April 2000
… I recommend that the Congress adopt … [a] continuation of the law for the renegotiation of war contracts—which will prevent exorbitant profits and assure fair prices to the Government. —Franklin D. Roosevelt, 11 Jan. 1944, in Nothing to Fear by B. D. Zevin, 1946
They were charged exorbitant rates for phone calls.
<the cost of our stay was so exorbitant you would have thought that we had bought the hotel and not just spent a few nights there>
Did You Know?
The first use of "exorbitant" in English was "wandering or deviating from the normal or ordinary course." That sense is now archaic, but it provides a hint as to the origins of "exorbitant": the word derives from Late Latin exorbitans, the present participle of the verb exorbitare, meaning "to deviate." "Exorbitare" in turn was formed by combining the prefix ex-, meaning "out of," with the noun orbita, meaning "track of a wheel or "rut." ("Orbita" itself traces back to "orbis," the Latin word for "disk" or "hoop.") In the 15th century "exorbitant" came to refer to something which fell outside of the normal or intended scope of the law. Eventually, it developed an extended sense as a synonym of "excessive."
Origin of exorbitant
Middle English, from Late Latin exorbitant-, exorbitans, present participle of exorbitare to deviate, from Latin ex- + orbita track of a wheel, rut, from orbis disk, hoop
First Known Use: 15th century
Synonym Discussion of exorbitant
EXORBITANT Defined for Kids
Definition of exorbitant for Students
: more than what is fair, reasonable, or expected <exorbitant prices>
Seen and Heard
What made you want to look up exorbitant? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).