barter

verb
bar·ter | \ˈbär-tər \
bartered; bartering; barters

Definition of barter 

(Entry 1 of 2)

intransitive verb

: to trade by exchanging one commodity for another : to trade goods or services in exchange for other goods or services farmers bartering for supplies with their crops bartered with the store's owner

transitive verb

: to trade or exchange by or as if by bartering bartering work for food

barter

noun

Definition of barter (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : the act or practice of trading goods or services for other goods or services : the act or practice of carrying on trade by bartering

2 : goods or services that are traded for other goods or services : the thing given in exchange in bartering

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Other Words from barter

Verb

barterer \ˈbär-tər-ər \ noun

Examples of barter in a Sentence

Noun

The tribes use a system of barter. The explorers used blankets and other supplies for barter to get food from the native people.

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

Friends told the British press that Rowley would often search dumpsters for items to barter or sell. William Booth, Anchorage Daily News, "Woman exposed to nerve agent in southern England dies; police launch murder investigation," 9 July 2018 Anyone who unlawfully captures or kills a big game animal and then sells or barters the animal is guilty of a felony. Dustin Gardiner, azcentral, "10 Arizona laws that actually exist: Private armies, food-wasting ban, windshield repairs," 27 June 2018 This early depiction suggests that although chocolate was being bartered at this point, it may not have been traded as a form of currency, Baron says. Joshua Rapp Learn, Science | AAAS, "The Maya civilization used chocolate as money," 27 June 2018 To generate publicity, the cash is handed out at ceremonies held in the weekly roadside markets where villagers gather to barter meager fish hauls for goods like plastic buckets or quart bottles of gasoline. New York Times, "Nearly Eradicated in Humans, the Guinea Worm Finds New Victims: Dogs," 18 June 2018 Prize is not transferable or redeemable for cash and may not be sold, bartered or auctioned. Union-tribune Rewards, sandiegouniontribune.com, "Enter to Win Two Tickets to San Diego Legion's Inaugural Rugby Season as well as a gift certificate to Hundred Proof!," 11 May 2018 Others report punishment for having hoarded, rationed or bartered for menstrual products. refinery29.com, "Meghan Markle Has Championed Menstrual Equity — Here's Why You Should Too," 21 May 2018 As the city bartered for water with local farmers and hustled to build desalination plants, its residents simply started using less water. Ryan Lenora Brown, The Christian Science Monitor, "Squeezing more out of taps: How Cape Town cut consumption in half," 30 Apr. 2018 His grandmother went to the grocery twice a month, grew her own vegetables and bartered with neighbors raising chickens, cows and pigs. Andrew Simmons, San Francisco Chronicle, "Rodney Spencer and the struggles and rewards of a West Oakland urban farm," 27 Apr. 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Choco Pies became so prevalent for sale or barter on the streets that North Korea reportedly banned their import to Kaesong in 2014. Brian Murphy, Washington Post, "The Choco Pie dividend: South Korean firms are drooling at the prospect of business in the North," 17 June 2018 In 1996, amid crippling famine, Ji tried to steal a few pieces of coal from a rail yard to barter for food. Brian Murphy, BostonGlobe.com, "Could these outspoken North Korean defectors return home?," 11 June 2018 In 1996, amid crippling famine, Ji tried to steal a few pieces of coal from a rail yard to barter for food. Brian Murphy, BostonGlobe.com, "Could these outspoken North Korean defectors return home?," 11 June 2018 Instead, like many early civilizations, they were thought to mostly barter, trading items such as tobacco, maize, and clothing. Joshua Rapp Learn, Science | AAAS, "The Maya civilization used chocolate as money," 27 June 2018 Hunger with nothing but itself to offer for barter. Karen Russell, The New Yorker, "Orange World," 4 June 2017 Construction work is grinding to a halt, and companies are offering real estate on soft loans or barter. New York Times, "A Canal Through Turkey? Presidential Vote Is a Test of Erdogan’s Building Spree," 21 June 2018 In 1996, amid crippling famine, Ji tried to steal a few pieces of coal from a rail yard to barter for food. Brian Murphy, BostonGlobe.com, "Could these outspoken North Korean defectors return home?," 11 June 2018 In 1996, amid crippling famine, Ji tried to steal a few pieces of coal from a rail yard to barter for food. Brian Murphy, BostonGlobe.com, "Could these outspoken North Korean defectors return home?," 11 June 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'barter.' 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 barter

Verb

15th century, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense

Noun

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for barter

Verb

Middle English bartren, from Anglo-French *bareter to do business, exchange, alteration of Old French barater — more at barratry

Noun

Middle English, noun derivative of bartren "to barter entry 1"

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Learn More about barter

Dictionary Entries near barter

Bartangi

bartender

bartendress

barter

Barth

Barthianism

barthite

Statistics for barter

Last Updated

21 Aug 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for barter

The first known use of barter was in the 15th century

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More Definitions for barter

barter

noun

Financial Definition of barter

What It Is

A barter (or bartering) is an exchange between two parties using goods and services for payment instead of currency.

How It Works

The barter system enables two parties to exchange goods or services based on mutually perceived value.

To illustrate, a plumber can fix a baker’s sink, for which the baker would normally have paid $100 for the service. Instead, the baker gives the plumber $100 worth of his baked goods.

Another example would be a photographer agreeing to photograph a dentist's wedding pictures in return for some dental work of equal value.

These transactions do not involve any exchange of currency, however, each party benefits from the transaction.

Why It Matters

People have bartered for goods and services since the dawn of civilization. Historically the barter system has been employed in times of financial crisis when currencies are unstable or when there is no common currency.

In addition, bartering is especially useful for parties that don't have a strong cash position that would normally be used to pay for goods or services.

Source: Investing Answers

barter

verb

English Language Learners Definition of barter

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: to exchange things (such as products or services) for other things instead of for money

barter

noun

English Language Learners Definition of barter (Entry 2 of 2)

: a system in which goods or services are exchanged for other goods or services instead of for money

: goods or services that are exchanged for other goods or services

barter

verb
bar·ter | \ˈbär-tər \
bartered; bartering

Kids Definition of barter

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: to trade by exchanging one thing for another without the use of money

Other Words from barter

barterer \ˈbär-tər-ər \ noun

barter

noun

Kids Definition of barter (Entry 2 of 2)

: the trade of one thing for another

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bar·ter | \ˈbär-tər \

Legal Definition of barter 

(Entry 1 of 2)

: to trade by exchanging one commodity or service for another

transitive verb

: to trade or exchange by or as if by bartering — compare sell

barter

noun

Legal Definition of barter (Entry 2 of 2)

: the art or practice of carrying on trade or exchange by or as if by bartering : exchange of one commodity or service for another — compare sale

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Comments on barter

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