af·​flu·​ence ˈa-(ˌ)flü-ən(t)s How to pronounce affluence (audio)
a-ˈflü- How to pronounce affluence (audio)
 or  ə-
: abundance of property : wealth
rose from poverty to affluence
: an abundant flow or supply : profusion
… to attain that breadth and height, that wealth of muscle, that affluence of flesh.Charlotte Brontë
: a flowing to or toward a point : influx

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What is the origin of affluence?

Affluence comes from the Latin verb affluere, "to flow abundantly". Thus, someone or something blessed with affluence has received an incoming flood of riches. Since the affluent residents of suburbs often work in the central city but pay taxes back home, the wealth of some metropolitan areas tends to flow in one direction—out.

Examples of affluence in a Sentence

this affluence of new students is straining an already crowded school system
Recent Examples on the Web My students come from economic backgrounds ranging from daily uncertainty to affluence. Nicole Dieker, Vox, 5 May 2024 The Total Pampering Solution Image Few companies are better at exploiting the American obsession with affluence than RH. David Segal, New York Times, 8 June 2024 Yet in general, Emirati citizens appear content with the affluence and comfort their state offers relative to elsewhere in the Middle East. Neil Quilliam, Foreign Affairs, 29 Dec. 2023 Yet their affluence would also lead to their downfalls. Marianne Mather, Chicago Tribune, 16 May 2024 See all Example Sentences for affluence 

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'affluence.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History


Middle English, "abundance, profusion," borrowed from Middle French & Latin; Middle French, borrowed from Latin affluentia, noun derivative of affluent-, affluens affluent entry 1 — more at -ence

First Known Use

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1b

Time Traveler
The first known use of affluence was in the 14th century

Dictionary Entries Near affluence

Cite this Entry

“Affluence.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 19 Jul. 2024.

Kids Definition


af·​flu·​ence ˈaf-ˌlü-ən(t)s How to pronounce affluence (audio)
a-ˈflü- How to pronounce affluence (audio)
: the state of having much wealth or property

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