en·​dow·​ment | \ in-ˈdau̇-mənt How to pronounce endowment (audio) , en- \

Definition of endowment

1 : the act or process of endowing
2 : something that is endowed specifically : the part of an institution's income derived from donations
3 : natural capacity, power, or ability a person of great intellectual endowment

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Examples of endowment in a Sentence

The hospital's endowment was established by a local family. The college has a large endowment. the endowment of a hospital wing
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Recent Examples on the Web Harvard University’s endowment is roughly 100 times as big as Western Michigan’s. Melissa Korn, WSJ, 8 June 2021 But over the same period, the school’s endowment increased nearly fourfold and is now worth more than $17 billion. Bob Fernandez, ProPublica, 29 May 2021 Arguably, his inclusion into that prestigious institution could dilute his message, ideals and spiritual endowment. Sanya Osha, Quartz, 18 Apr. 2021 This one was from Robert E. Sydow, a California fund manager who had been close friends with Mr. Larson and whose firm, Grandview Capital Management, Mr. Larson had hired to manage a $1.6 billion slice of the foundation’s endowment. New York Times, 26 May 2021 The college isn't just getting a new name -- Bob Iger, executive chairman of the Walt Disney Company -- is also set to fundraise for a new building and endowment for the college. Leah Asmelash, CNN, 26 May 2021 James received her endowment and family sealings by proxy in 1979, seven decades after her death on April 16, 1908. David Noyce, The Salt Lake Tribune, 20 May 2021 But Kessler noted that Stanford’s overall endowment is at least $28 billion. Bob Egelko, San Francisco Chronicle, 12 May 2021 In response, Smith increased its endowment draw, the senior leadership team took voluntary pay cuts and more than 200 staff members were furloughed. Los Angeles Times, 6 May 2021

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

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Time Traveler for endowment

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The first known use of endowment was in the 15th century

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Statistics for endowment

Last Updated

11 Jun 2021

Cite this Entry

“Endowment.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/endowment. Accessed 13 Jun. 2021.

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More Definitions for endowment



English Language Learners Definition of endowment

: a large amount of money that has been given to a school, hospital, etc., and that is used to pay for its creation and continuing support
: the act of providing money to create or support a school, organization, etc.
: a person's natural ability or talent


en·​dow·​ment | \ in-ˈdau̇-mənt How to pronounce endowment (audio) \

Kids Definition of endowment

1 : the act of providing money for support
2 : money provided for support a college's endowment



Legal Definition of endowment

1 : the act or process of endowing
2 : a result or product of endowing: as
a : the income of an institution derived from donations the university's ability to attract endowment
b : the property (as a fund) donated to an institution or organization that is invested and producing income an endowment to maintain the gallery
3 : an endowed organization or institution : foundation chairwoman of the state's arts endowment


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