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

The correspondence illuminates the level of detail and effort that executives have to expend to comply with the new accounting standard, said Matthew Kaplan, a securities attorney at law firm Debevoise & Plimpton. Mark Maurer, WSJ, "SEC Pushes Adobe to Expand Disclosures Under New Accounting Rules," 3 July 2019 Having to catch the equivalent of 350 pounds in hatchery fish, which are smaller and lower quality, expends significantly more energy. Jim Robbins, New York Times, "How Long Before These Salmon Are Gone? ‘Maybe 20 Years’," 16 Sep. 2019 Naps Naps expend little to no calories but are always worth it. Irving Ruan Mia Mercado, The New Yorker, "Literal Writing Exercises," 14 Sep. 2019 Yet nearly two dozen other cities likely expended far more than usual on caring for asylum-seekers, including Los Angeles, San Diego, Berkeley, Dallas, Denver, Austin, Phoenix, and Tucson, and a smattering of smaller towns in all four border states. Aaron Cantú, The New Republic, "Inside Trump’s Border Chaos," 12 Sep. 2019 Before that, the Mukuntuweap National Monument was protected as a national monument by President Howard Taft in 1909, and it was expended and became the park. NBC News, "3 hurt in rockfall at Utah's Zion National Park," 27 Aug. 2019 Since August 2017, the Salvation Army expended $13,000 of city funds, reuniting 54 individuals with family. San Diego Union-Tribune, "El Cajon provides update on city-sponsored homeless programs," 21 Aug. 2019 Instead, Hoang expended an extreme amount of effort to fit in as a teenager, often with little success. Lisa Bonos, Dallas News, "Romance novelist Helen Hoang writes about love on the autism spectrum," 23 July 2019 Since 2008, China's government has expended a huge amount of energy and money in addressing the country's air quality problems. James Griffiths, CNN, "China has made major progress on air pollution. Wuhan protests show there's still a long way to go," 10 July 2019

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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Statistics for expend

Last Updated

5 Oct 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for expend

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

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More Definitions for expend



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

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with expend

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for 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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