compensate

verb
com·​pen·​sate | \ ˈkäm-pən-ˌsāt, -ˌpen-\
compensated; compensating

Definition of compensate

transitive verb

1 : to be equivalent to : counterbalance Her virtues compensate her faults.
2 : to make an appropriate and usually counterbalancing payment to compensate the victims for their loss
3a : to provide with means of counteracting variation compensate a magnetic needle
b : to neutralize the effect of (variations)

intransitive verb

1 : to supply an equivalent used with for compensate for his feelings of loneliness by assertions of superiority.— W. H. Auden
2 : to offset an error, defect, or undesired effect his enthusiasm compensates for his lack of skill
3 : to undergo or engage in psychological or physiological compensation His aggression was an attempt to compensate for inherent passivity.

Keep scrolling for more

Other Words from compensate

compensative \ ˈkäm-​pən-​ˌsā-​tiv , -​ˌpen-​ ; kəm-​ˈpen(t)-​sə-​ \ adjective
compensator \ ˈkäm-​pən-​ˌsā-​tər , -​ˌpen-​ \ noun
compensatory \ kəm-​ˈpen(t)-​sə-​ˌtȯr-​ē \ adjective

Choose the Right Synonym for compensate

pay, compensate, remunerate, satisfy, reimburse, indemnify, repay, recompense mean to give money or its equivalent in return for something. pay implies the discharge of an obligation incurred. paid their bills compensate implies a making up for services rendered. an attorney well compensated for her services remunerate clearly suggests paying for services rendered and may extend to payment that is generous or not contracted for. promised to remunerate the searchers handsomely satisfy implies paying a person what is required by law. all creditors will be satisfied in full reimburse implies a return of money that has been spent for another's benefit. reimbursed employees for expenses indemnify implies making good a loss suffered through accident, disaster, warfare. indemnified the families of the dead miners repay stresses paying back an equivalent in kind or amount. repay a favor with a favor recompense suggests due return in amends, friendly repayment, or reward. passengers were recompensed for the delay

Examples of compensate in a Sentence

His enthusiasm compensates for his lack of skill. The price of the item has been reduced to compensate for a defect. compensate workers for their labor She was not compensated for the damage done to her car.
See More

Recent Examples on the Web

French Guiana has other compensating assets, however. Eric Berger, Ars Technica, "As the SpaceX steamroller surges, European rocket industry vows to resist," 20 July 2018 They might be based on status, pitting older and better-compensated subgroups against younger, underpaid factions. Ben Reiter, SI.com, "Why Carlos Beltrán Was the Perfect Addition to Aid the Astros' Journey to the World Series," 9 July 2018 Hall suggests that retailers educate themselves on how much a cotton farmer should be paid, and implement a system to make sure they’re being compensated fairly. Sarah Spellings, The Cut, "Wouldn’t You Pay an Extra 20 Cents for an Ethically Made Shirt?," 19 June 2018 But now that the U.N. is moving forward on community projects such as one in the town of Mirebalais, concerns are rising over whether victims will ever be adequately compensated. Jacqueline Charles, miamiherald, "U.S. Congress to U.N.: What are you doing to compensate Haiti's cholera victims?," 15 June 2018 What's less clear is if and how the writing staff, including showrunner Bruce Helford, will be compensated. Lesley Goldberg, The Hollywood Reporter, "A 'Roseanne' Spinoff? ABC Sets Meeting to Hear Ideas," 1 June 2018 Chief revenue officer Andrew Watterson says the airline had already come to the conclusion that compensating passengers for bumping them took up valuable gate-agent time and resulted in lousy customer experiences. Scott Mccartney, WSJ, "The Push to End Bumping Passengers From Flights," 5 Dec. 2018 The report calls on Harvard’s endowment fund to cease all its investments in farmlands, take immediate action to resolve all land conflicts and adequately compensate communities for damages. Caleb Parke, Fox News, "Harvard's billion-dollar global farmland investments under fire from activists," 12 Sep. 2018 Although South Korea’s Defense Ministry has compensated farmers for their land, grievances remain. Time, "Inside Camp Humphreys, South Korea: America's Largest Overseas Military Base," 13 July 2018

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

See More

First Known Use of compensate

1646, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1

History and Etymology for compensate

Latin compensatus, past participle of compensare, frequentative of compendere — see compendium

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about compensate

Share compensate

Statistics for compensate

Last Updated

10 Jan 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for compensate

The first known use of compensate was in 1646

See more words from the same year

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for compensate

compensate

verb

English Language Learners Definition of compensate

: to provide something good as a balance against something bad or undesirable : to make up for some defect or weakness

: to give money or something else of value to (someone) in return for something (such as work) or as payment for something lost, damaged, etc.

compensate

verb
com·​pen·​sate | \ ˈkäm-pən-ˌsāt \
compensated; compensating

Kids Definition of compensate

1 : to make up for The Captain … compensating for the tremor in his hands, slowly lifted his own cup …— Katherine Paterson, Jacob Have I Loved
2 : to give money to make up for something The factory will compensate an injured worker.

compensate

verb
com·​pen·​sate | \ ˈkäm-pən-ˌsāt, -ˌpen- \
compensated; compensating

Medical Definition of compensate

transitive verb

: to subject to or remedy by physiological compensation compensated hypertensive patients

intransitive verb

: to undergo, experience, or engage in psychological or physiological compensation his aggression was an attempt to compensate for inherent passivity

Keep scrolling for more

compensate

transitive verb
com·​pen·​sate | \ ˈkäm-pən-ˌsāt, -ˌpen- \
compensated; compensating

Legal Definition of compensate

: to make an appropriate and usually counterbalancing payment to compensate the victims for their injuries adequately compensated for her work

Other Words from compensate

compensatory \ kəm-​ˈpen-​sə-​ˌtōr-​ē \ adjective

Keep scrolling for more

Comments on compensate

What made you want to look up compensate? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).

WORD OF THE DAY

tremendous in size, volume, or degree

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Homophone Quiz

  • three-bears-two-of-them-look-like-theyre-whispering-to-a-third-bear-who-looks-chuffed-to-be-the-center-of-attention
  • In order to judge how people felt, the senator's office hired a firm to take a ______.
How Strong Is Your Vocabulary?

Test your vocabulary with our 10-question quiz!

TAKE THE QUIZ
SCRABBLE® Sprint

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

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!