at a cost
Definition of at a cost
: by giving up something else He had achieved fame, but at a cost; he'd lost many friends and no longer talked to anyone in his family.
Word by Word Definitions
: the amount or equivalent paid or charged for something : price
: the outlay or expenditure (as of effort or sacrifice) made to achieve an object
: loss or penalty incurred especially in gaining something
: to require expenditure or payment
: to require effort, suffering, or loss
: to have a price of
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