con·​tri·​bu·​tion | \ ˌkän-trə-ˈbyü-shən How to pronounce contribution (audio) \

Definition of contribution

1 : a payment (such as a levy or tax) imposed by military, civil, or ecclesiastical authorities usually for a special or extraordinary purpose
2 : the act of contributing also : the thing contributed his $100 contribution to the cancer research fund

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Other Words from contribution

contributive \ kən-​ˈtri-​byə-​tiv How to pronounce contributive (audio) \ adjective
contributively adverb

Examples of contribution in a Sentence

They thanked him for his contribution of time and money. He made an important contribution to the debate. As mayor, he made many positive contributions to the growth of the city. a book of essays including contributions from several well-known political columnists The money was raised by voluntary contribution.
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Recent Examples on the Web Beyond safety risks, generators have an outsized contribution to climate change: A relatively new, average-size gasoline generator running for an hour produces about the same emissions as a car driving for about 150 miles. Taylor Kate Brown,, "Bay Briefing: Why do presidential candidates suddenly care about California property taxes?," 14 Nov. 2019 All members are welcome to remain, but the vote in NATO council meetings should be withdrawn from any country that does not meet three quarters of its contribution target. Conrad Black, National Review, "A Post-Post-Cold-War NATO," 13 Nov. 2019 As a result of the catastrophic damage to his left knee incurred while on the field, Pedroia’s contributions on the field over the last two seasons — just nine games — have been almost non-existent., "SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. — Plenty of decisions have brought the Red Sox to the point of uncomfortable contortions as they try to limbo under the $208 million luxury tax threshold for the 2020 season. Among them is a decision that was made by the team more than six years ago.," 13 Nov. 2019 Denmark has also criticized U.S. demands regarding contributions to NATO. Morten Buttler / Bloomberg, Time, "Trump Administration Hosting New Greenland Talks With Denmark, Focused on 'Presence' and 'Investments'," 13 Nov. 2019 Both Mack and Youngstown State coach Jerrod Calhoun compared Kimble's contributions to what fellow grad transfer point guard Christen Cunningham brought to Louisville in 2018-19. Lucas Aulbach, The Courier-Journal, "Fresh Kimble hasn't scored much for Louisville, but he's been an important piece," 13 Nov. 2019 Most donors give an average of less than $140 per contribution, which is an indicator of how many Minnesotans donate each Give to the Max Day, Blumberg added. Michelle Griffith, Twin Cities, "Give to the Max Day is Thursday, and organizers are hoping to top last year’s record $21M mark," 13 Nov. 2019 Ballard's bundled contributions to the Trump Victory PAC reached almost $300,000 last quarter. NBC News, "As prosecutors raise pressure on Turkish bank, Erdogan likely to ask Trump to go easy," 13 Nov. 2019 Cornerback Trayvon Mullen, defensive end Maxx Crosby, tight end Foster Moreau and slot wide receiver Hunter Renfrow are all making contributions. Brad Biggs,, "NFL power rankings for Week 11: Lamar Jackson-led Ravens ascend to the top spot; Bears edge their way into the top 20," 12 Nov. 2019

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

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for contribution

see contribute

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Statistics for contribution

Last Updated

17 Nov 2019

Time Traveler for contribution

The first known use of contribution was in the 14th century

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More Definitions for contribution


How to pronounce contribution (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of contribution

: something that is given to help a person, a cause, etc.
: something that is done to cause something to happen
: a piece of writing that is published as part of a larger work (such as a magazine, newspaper, or book)


con·​tri·​bu·​tion | \ ˌkän-trə-ˈbyü-shən How to pronounce contribution (audio) \

Kids Definition of contribution

: the act of giving something or something given : donation



Legal Definition of contribution

1 : payment of a share of an amount for which one is liable: as
a : shared payment of a judgment by joint tortfeasors especially according to proportional fault — compare apportion sense a
b : pro rata apportionment of loss among all the insurance policies covering the same person or property — compare indemnity
2 : the money paid by one responsible for a share
3 : payment to a common fund (as by an employer or employee to an insurance plan or retirement fund)

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Comments on contribution

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


concealed or difficult to comprehend

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