noun, often attributive
dol·​lar | \ ˈdä-lər How to pronounce dollar (audio) \

Definition of dollar

1 : taler
2 : any of numerous coins patterned after the taler (such as a Spanish peso)
3a : any of various basic monetary units (as in the U.S. and Canada) — see Money Table
b : a coin, note, or token representing one dollar
4 : ringgit
5 : money obtained from a specific source the tourism dollar

Synonyms for dollar


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In the mountains of Bohemia is the small town of Jáchymov. In the early 16th century, the town was known by its German name, Sankt Joachimstal. At that time, a silver mine was opened nearby, and coins were minted to which the name joachimstaler was applied. In German this was shortened to Taler. Shortly afterward the Dutch or Low German form daler was borrowed into English to refer to the Taler and other coins that were patterned after it, such as the Spanish peso, which circulated widely in Britain’s North American colonies. Our modern word dollar is a different spelling of this daler. When the newly independent American colonies settled on an official monetary unit in 1785, they chose the name dollar.

Examples of dollar in a Sentence

She had to pay hundreds of dollars in auto repairs. She put a wrinkled dollar down on the counter. The dollar dropped sharply against the pound. the strength of the dollar The dollar is worth more in Mexico.
Recent Examples on the Web Democrat Tim Ryan’s fundraising edge over Republican J.D. Vance in the Senate race largely is thanks to a wave of small-dollar donations from around the country. Cliff Pinckard, cleveland, 27 Sep. 2022 Mastriano has resisted private entreaties from supporters to engage more with the news media — if only to spread his message to potential small-dollar donors. Reid J. Epstein,, 26 Sep. 2022 While Trump has been a prolific fundraiser since leaving office, vacuuming up small-dollar donations, his existing super PAC — Make America Great Again, Again! — has not been a major midterm player. Time, 23 Sep. 2022 According to analysis from the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, contributing to Fetterman's advantage was small-dollar donors, with $5.1 million being raised from those who gave less than $200, compared to Oz's $153,000. Caroline Linton, CBS News, 14 Sep. 2022 Trump has continued to shovel up small-dollar donations in the months since, frustrating other Republicans who have been struggling to raise money ahead of the November midterm elections. Jill Colvin, Brian Slodysko And Eric Tucker, Anchorage Daily News, 13 Sep. 2022 The analysis also undercut a theory that Trump was hoarding small-dollar donors for himself. Ben Kamisar, NBC News, 9 Sep. 2022 By the end of the week, his campaign had raised more than $1 million in small-dollar donations off Oz’s video, according to campaign spokesperson Joe Calvello. Los Angeles Times, 7 Sep. 2022 The nation’s largest banks are moving away from the practice of charging exorbitant fees on what are mostly small-dollar purchases after years of public pressure. Ken Sweet, Chicago Tribune, 18 Aug. 2022 See More

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

First Known Use of dollar

1553, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for dollar

Dutch or Low German daler, from German Taler, short for Joachimstaler, from Sankt Joachimsthal, Bohemia, where talers were first made

Learn More About dollar

Dictionary Entries Near dollar

doll's head



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Statistics for dollar

Last Updated

30 Sep 2022

Cite this Entry

“Dollar.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 30 Sep. 2022.

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More Definitions for dollar


dol·​lar | \ ˈdä-lər How to pronounce dollar (audio) \

Kids Definition of dollar

: any of various coins or pieces of paper money (as of the United States or Canada) equal to 100 cents

More from Merriam-Webster on dollar

Nglish: Translation of dollar for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of dollar for Arabic Speakers Encyclopedia article about dollar


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