Definition of compensate
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 needleb : to neutralize the effect of (variations)
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.
compensatorplay \ˈkäm-pən-ˌsā-tər, -ˌpen-\ noun
compensatoryplay \kəm-ˈpen(t)-sə-ˌtȯr-ē\ adjective
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.
Recent Examples of compensate from the Web
Illinois compensates crime victims up to $27,000 for a variety of services, including the cost to clean a home or car after a violent death.
The long rear doors also compensate for the lack of a third side window, a Sportage trademark design.
The law was aimed at compensating Louisiana, Texas, Alabama and Mississippi for their costs in serving the offshore oil industry, including onshore effects.
Wal-Mart didn’t specify how the employees will be compensated.
Three stellar opening acts will compensate for Future’s reticence.
Butler's development, however, wouldn't be enough to compensate for the potential losses of Arrieta and John Lackey after this season.
The agreement will compensate songwriters in suits filed by David Lowery and Melissa Ferrick.
The deliverymen were well hydrated and well compensated.
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.
Synonym Discussion of compensate
COMPENSATE Defined for English Language Learners
Definition of compensate for English Language Learners
: 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 Defined for Kids
Definition of compensate for Students
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.
Medical Definition of compensate
Legal Definition of compensate
: to make an appropriate and usually counterbalancing payment to compensate the victims for their injuries adequately compensated for her work
compensatory\kəm-ˈpen-sə-ˌtōr-ē\ play adjective
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