affluence

noun
af·​flu·​ence | \ ˈa-(ˌ)flü-ən(t)s also a-ˈflü- or ə-\

Definition of affluence 

1a : abundance of property : wealth rose from poverty to affluence
b : an abundant flow or supply : profusion … to attain that breadth and height, that wealth of muscle, that affluence of flesh.— Charlotte Brontë
2 : a flowing to or toward a point : influx

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Synonyms & Antonyms for affluence

Synonyms

flux, income, inflow, influx, inpouring, inrush

Antonyms

outflow, outpouring

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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

In movies, most often adaptations, affluence and luxury have been a way for Hollywood to make something esoteric or niche appeal to more mainstream audiences. Alex Abad-santos, Vox, "Crazy Rich Asians’ crazy rich success could mean more stories about less crazy rich Asian-American people.," 21 Dec. 2018 The truth is that affluence, education, geography and other things say far more about the distribution of votes than does race. Chris Stirewalt, Fox News, "St. Beto and the August altar call," 30 Aug. 2018 Mr Netanyahu’s popular support is based largely on Israel’s economic affluence. The Economist, "Binyamin Netanyahu’s unofficial history," 2 May 2018 Historically, affluence has often been key to gaining political leverage, and to ensuring that leverage has translated into actual policy change. Alia Wong, The Atlantic, "The Parkland Students Aren't Going Away," 24 Feb. 2018 The safety and affluence of liberal democratic societies makes them magnets for people from less fortunate parts of the world fleeing the poverty and violence that were inescapable for most of human history. Cathy Young, BostonGlobe.com, "Is liberal democracy failing? No, it’s a victim of its own success," 8 July 2018 The committee was composed mostly of senators from western states devoted to fulfilling their constituents’ dreams of a home and ever-increasing affluence. John F. Ross, Smithsonian, "The Visionary John Wesley Powell Had a Plan for Developing the West, But Nobody Listened," 3 July 2018 These are people who live with less rather than more, in the context of America’s relative affluence as a nation. Stephanie Zacharek, Time, "Review: 'The King' Is Both an Elvis Presley Documentary and a Song for America," 21 June 2018 Is affluence merely a signifier, now, of venality and corruption? Taylor Antrim, Vogue, "Five Reasons to Get Hooked on HBO’s Succession," 8 June 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'affluence.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of affluence

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

History and Etymology for affluence

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

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Statistics for affluence

Last Updated

14 Jan 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for affluence

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

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More Definitions for affluence

affluence

noun
af·​flu·​ence | \ ˈa-ˌflü-əns \

Kids Definition of affluence

: the state of having much money and expensive things : wealth

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Comments on affluence

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