de·​fray | \di-ˈfrā, dē-\

Definition of defray 

transitive verb

1 : to provide for the payment of : pay sold advertising on his website to help defray the cost of running it

2 archaic : to bear the expenses of (a person)

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Other Words from defray

defrayable \-​ə-​bəl \ adjective
defrayal \-​ˈfrā(-​ə)l \ noun

Examples of defray in a Sentence

This will defray the costs.

Recent Examples on the Web

Similar to human health insurance, pet insurance can help defray the cost of expensive medical treatment, including for chronic conditions like cancer or arthritis. USA TODAY, "Don't let puppy love blind you to the expense of having a dog," 22 June 2018 But the new services, particularly those that encourage shoppers to retrieve online orders in stores, also are aimed at defraying shipping costs, reducing returns and boosting sales. Khadeeja Safdar, WSJ, "Black Friday Shoppers Beware: Online Shopping Gets More Complicated," 18 Nov. 2018 Baran has a GoFundMe page to raise money to help defray medical costs not covered by insurance. Elizabeth Llorente, Fox News, "Students, families struggle to repay billions in crushing loan debts," 6 Sep. 2018 These grants defrayed the total price, but each city had some independent costs. Laura Bednar,, "Independence Police Department joins three other cities to form combined dispatch center," 7 May 2018 Spring for Music, in its day, defrayed some of the expenses and helped with the logistics of a New York appearance. James R. Oestreich, New York Times, "Review: Two U.S. Orchestras Get a Rare Chance at Carnegie," 23 Apr. 2018 Politico explains: [T]o help defray the budgetary cost of [tax cuts on businesses and individuals], Republicans simultaneously pared tax breaks for workers’ fringe benefits, which is projected to raise around $40 billion over the next decade. Eric Levitz, Daily Intelligencer, "The GOP Raised Taxes on Churches to Fund Its Giveaway to the Rich," 26 June 2018 The $50,000 that the historical society hopes to raise will help defray the production’s expenses. Pam Grady,, "Reel Local News: Frameline announces festival winners," 5 July 2018 The move is part of a broader strategy under Chief Executive Jim Hackett to cut costs by using partnerships to help defray the hefty expense of engineering and building new models. Christina Rogers, WSJ, "Ford Expands Partnership With Indian Car Maker," 22 Mar. 2018

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

1536, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for defray

Middle French deffroyer, from des- de- + frayer to expend, from Old French, from frais, plural of fret, frait expenditure, literally, damage by breaking, from Latin fractum, neuter of fractus, past participle of frangere to break — more at break

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Statistics for defray

Last Updated

9 Dec 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for defray

The first known use of defray was in 1536

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More Definitions for defray



English Language Learners Definition of defray

: to pay for (something)

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More from Merriam-Webster on defray

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with defray

Spanish Central: Translation of defray

Nglish: Translation of defray for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of defray for Arabic Speakers

Comments on defray

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


a knickknack or trinket

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