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verb rec·om·pense \ˈre-kəm-ˌpen(t)s\

Simple Definition of recompense

  • : to give something (such as money) to (someone) as a reward or as a payment for loss or suffering

Full Definition of recompense


  1. transitive verb
  2. 1 a :  to give something to by way of compensation (as for a service rendered or damage incurred) b :  to pay for

  3. 2 :  to return in kind :  requite

Examples of recompense

  1. <the cash-strapped museum can recompense lecturers with only token honorariums>

  2. <that company still needs to recompense the work that the contractor finished last month>

Origin of recompense

Middle English, from Anglo-French recompenser, from Late Latin recompensare, from Latin re- + compensare to compensate

First Known Use: 15th century

Synonym Discussion of recompense

pay, compensate, remunerate, satisfy, reimburse, indemnify, repay, recompense mean to give money or its equivalent in return for something. pay implies the discharge of an obligation incurred <paid their bills>. compensate implies a making up for services rendered <an attorney well compensated for her services>. remunerate clearly suggests paying for services rendered and may extend to payment that is generous or not contracted for <promised to remunerate the searchers handsomely>. satisfy implies paying a person what is required by law <all creditors will be satisfied in full>. reimburse implies a return of money that has been spent for another's benefit <reimbursed employees for expenses>. indemnify implies making good a loss suffered through accident, disaster, or warfare <indemnified the families of the dead miners>. repay stresses paying back an equivalent in kind or amount <repay a favor with a favor>. recompense suggests due return in amends, friendly repayment, or reward <passengers were recompensed for the delay>.



noun rec·om·pense

Simple Definition of recompense

  • : something that is given to or done to thank or reward someone or to pay someone for loss or suffering

Full Definition of recompense

  1. :  an equivalent or a return for something done, suffered, or given :  compensation <offered in recompense for injuries>

Examples of recompense

  1. He is asking for a just recompense for the work he's done.

  2. He received $10,000 in recompense for his injuries.

15th Century

First Known Use of recompense

15th century

Seen and Heard

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February 10, 2016

to put in good humor

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