ex·​pend | \ ik-ˈspend How to pronounce expend (audio) \
expended; expending; expends

Definition of expend

transitive verb

1 : to pay out : spend the social services upon which public revenue is expended— J. A. Hobson
2 : to make use of for a specific purpose : utilize projects on which they expended great energy also : use up

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Other Words from expend

expender noun

Examples of expend in a Sentence

Are we willing to expend the time and resources required to solve the problem? redecoration will have to wait, since we've just expended our last dollar in buying the house
Recent Examples on the Web Affording a Rolls-Royce is hard enough, but now the British luxury maker has announced a new model that will require owners to expend considerable brainpower on solving it. Mike Duff, Car and Driver, "Rolls-Royce Wraith Kryptos Collection Version Unveiled with Puzzle Hidden Inside," 7 July 2020 This environment requires anatomical compromises—their small bodies have less force but expend less energy. National Geographic, "ADAPTED TO THE EXTREME," 16 June 2020 The shift has forced the Trump campaign and its allies to expend resources in several states that initially had been expected to be safely in the president’s column. Evan Halper, Los Angeles Times, "Cash floods into pro-Biden super PAC," 19 June 2020 Further, this rule is designed to provide labor organization members a proper accounting of how their labor organization’s funds are invested or otherwise expended by the trust. Sean Higgins, Washington Examiner, "Labor Department says new financial disclosure rules would have exposed UAW corruption earlier," 5 Mar. 2020 Given the importance of the angler in this complex interaction, biologists and regulators have expended much effort to develop guidelines for catch-and-release fishing. Popular Science, "Releasing a caught fish isn’t as simple as tossing it overboard," 11 Feb. 2020 Neatness can be restored, but someone will have to expend energy in the effort to tidy up. Sophie Bushwick, Scientific American, "A Simple Twist of Thermodynamics Could Lead to Greener Refrigeration," 21 Jan. 2020 Ask this: Should a Dolphins team that didn’t draft Jackson for fear of injury expend it’s expected top-10 pick on Tua, considering his history of injuries? Dave Hyde, sun-sentinel.com, "Hyde: Twenty-two-for-Tua should be Dolphins’ offseason draft refrain | Commentary," 6 Dec. 2019 Meanwhile, Google is hosting Your Plan, Your Planet and providing tips on how to waste less food and water, recycle your clothes and household items, and expend less energy to power your life. Anabel Pasarow, refinery29.com, "Earth Day Is Remote This Year — But You Can Still Participate Online," 22 Apr. 2020

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

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for expend

Middle English, from Latin expendere to weigh out, expend, from ex- + pendere to weigh — more at spin

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Time Traveler for expend

Time Traveler

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

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Statistics for expend

Last Updated

16 Jul 2020

Cite this Entry

“Expend.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/expend. Accessed 8 Aug. 2020.

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More Definitions for expend


How to pronounce expend (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of expend

: to use or spend (something)
: to use (time, energy, effort, etc.) for a particular purpose


ex·​pend | \ ik-ˈspend How to pronounce expend (audio) \
expended; expending

Kids Definition of expend

1 : to pay out : spend
2 : to use up He expended a lot of energy.

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More from Merriam-Webster on expend

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for expend

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with expend

Spanish Central: Translation of expend

Nglish: Translation of expend for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of expend for Arabic Speakers

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