verb (1)
\ ˈərn How to pronounce earn (audio) \
earned; earning; earns

Definition of earn

 (Entry 1 of 2)

transitive verb

1a : to receive as return for effort and especially for work done or services rendered
b : to bring in by way of return bonds earning 10 percent interest
2a : to come to be duly worthy of or entitled or suited to she earned a promotion
b : to make worthy of or obtain for the suggestion earned him a promotion


verb (2)
earned; earning; earns

Definition of earn (Entry 2 of 2)

Other Words from earn

Verb (1)

earner noun

Synonyms & Antonyms for earn

Synonyms: Verb (1)

Antonyms: Verb (1)

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Examples of earn in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb Katelyn Love, the board's legal counsel, announced Monday that the North Carolina Green Party has submitted more than enough signatures validated by both the state and county elections boards to earn immediate recognition. Hannah Schoenbaum, ajc, 1 Aug. 2022 Customer benefits include the ability to earn rewards, organize your shopping list, Clip and Save with personalized coupons, order ahead to avoid lines, browse recipes, and manage health and wellness. Randy Bean, Forbes, 1 Aug. 2022 This year, Chief Erika Shields is expected to earn a little over $233,000. Jonathan Bullington, The Courier-Journal, 1 Aug. 2022 Caesars’ offer essentially gives all new players two opportunities to earn their first win with the sportsbook. Xl Media, cleveland, 31 July 2022 Rizzo’s home run cost Greinke a chance to earn his first win at Yankee Stadium. Jerry Beach, Hartford Courant, 31 July 2022 The top 75 will advance to the Finals, with an opportunity to earn one of an additional 25 PGA Tour cards for 2023. The Salt Lake Tribune, 31 July 2022 The South Korea native’s seventh-place finish, at 18-under, is expected to earn him a PGA Tour card for next season. Chandler Engelbrecht, Detroit Free Press, 31 July 2022 Answer all 10 questions below to earn a final score. oregonlive, 31 July 2022 See More

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

First Known Use of earn

Verb (1)

before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

Verb (2)

circa 1530, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for earn

Verb (1)

Middle English ernen, from Old English earnian; akin to Old High German arnōn to reap, Czech jeseň autumn

Verb (2)

probably alteration of yearn

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Time Traveler for earn

Time Traveler

The first known use of earn was before the 12th century

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Dictionary Entries Near earn



earn a living

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Statistics for earn

Last Updated

4 Aug 2022

Cite this Entry

“Earn.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/earn. Accessed 11 Aug. 2022.

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More Definitions for earn


\ ˈərn How to pronounce earn (audio) \
earned; earning

Kids Definition of earn

1 : to get for work done She earns her pay.
2 : to deserve as a result of labor or service He earned good grades.

More from Merriam-Webster on earn

Nglish: Translation of earn for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of earn for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about earn


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