alms

noun
\ ˈä(l)mz How to pronounce alms (audio) \
plural alms

Definition of alms

1 : something (such as money or food) given freely to relieve the poor distributing alms to the needy
2 archaic : charity

Other Words from alms

almsgiver \ ˈä(l)mz-​ˌgi-​vər How to pronounce alms (audio) \ noun
almsgiving \ ˈä(l)mz-​ˌgi-​viŋ How to pronounce alms (audio) \ noun

Examples of alms in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web The motions also draw from biblical admonitions on the giving of alms. The Salt Lake Tribune, 25 Apr. 2022 The Queen has increasingly relied on Prince Charles to take on public engagements in the twilight of her reign, most recently offering alms to senior citizens at the Royal Maundy service at St. George’s Chapel. Danica Kirka, Chicago Tribune, 21 Apr. 2022 The Queen has increasingly relied on Prince Charles to take on public engagements in the twilight of her reign, most recently offering alms to senior citizens at the Royal Maundy service at St. George’s Chapel. Danica Kirka, ajc, 21 Apr. 2022 On Maundy Thursday, the Queen traditionally offers ‘alms’ to senior citizens to recognize their service to the church or community. Victoria Murphy, Town & Country, 14 Apr. 2022 Each year, The Queen commemorates this by offering 'alms' to senior citizens in recognition of their service to the church and to the local community. Stephanie Petit, PEOPLE.com, 14 Apr. 2022 Finally, there is the weighted alms-giver, a Russian twist variation which targets the core. Philip Ellis, Men's Health, 8 Feb. 2022 Religion proved to be an especially powerful social glue, providing common purpose, mutual protection, and a modicum of alms distribution, often enforced by the idea of retributive deities and their earthly emissaries. The New Yorker, 9 Aug. 2021 Religion proved to be an especially powerful social glue, providing common purpose, mutual protection, and a modicum of alms distribution, often enforced by the idea of retributive deities and their earthly emissaries. The New Yorker, 9 Aug. 2021 See More

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

First Known Use of alms

before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 2

History and Etymology for alms

Middle English almesse, almes, from Old English ælmesse, ælmes, from Late Latin eleemosyna alms, from Greek eleēmosynē pity, alms, from eleēmōn merciful, from eleos pity

Learn More About alms

Time Traveler for alms

Time Traveler

The first known use of alms was before the 12th century

See more words from the same century

Dictionary Entries Near alms

almous

alms

alms basin

See More Nearby Entries 

Statistics for alms

Last Updated

8 May 2022

Cite this Entry

“Alms.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/alms. Accessed 25 May. 2022.

Style: MLA
MLACheck Mark Icon ChicagoCheck Mark Icon APACheck Mark Icon Merriam-WebsterCheck Mark Icon

More Definitions for alms

alms

noun
\ ˈämz How to pronounce alms (audio) , ˈälmz \
plural alms

Kids Definition of alms

: money given to help the poor : charity

More from Merriam-Webster on alms

Nglish: Translation of alms for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of alms for Arabic Speakers

WORD OF THE DAY

Test Your Vocabulary

Eponyms: Words Named After People

Name That Thing

Test your visual vocabulary with our 10-question challenge!

TAKE THE QUIZ
Universal Daily Crossword

A daily challenge for crossword fanatics.

TAKE THE QUIZ
Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!