variants or less commonly five-and-ten
plural five-and-dimes also five-and-tens
: a retail store that carries a variety of chiefly inexpensive merchandise
When I was a little girl you could still buy things at the five-and-dime.Nikki Giovanni
But most five-and-dimes faded away, done in by competition from big box stores, or failure to adapt to changing tastes quickly enough.Carl Nolte
After the grocery store came the five-and-ten, a rambling, comfortable hodgepodge of unrelated items and scents.Lee Ebler

Examples of five-and-dime in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web The prominent corner store has seen a succession of uses over the years: it’s been a variety store (the G.C. Murphy five-and-dime shop), a dollar store, an antique mall and, most recently, a restaurant called the Five and Dime Ale House, which closed last year. Amanda Yeager, Baltimore Sun, 22 Apr. 2024 The sit-in movement had been touched off on Feb. 1, 1960, when four Black college students sat down at a White-only lunch counter at an F.W. Woolworth five-and-dime store in downtown Greensboro, N.C. Emily Langer, Washington Post, 13 Mar. 2024 Kmart started in the late 1800s as the S.S. Kresge Co., becoming a small chain of five-and-dime discount stores. Dallas News, 26 Feb. 2023

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'five-and-dime.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History


from the fact that all articles in such stores were formerly priced at either 5 or 10 cents

First Known Use

1880, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of five-and-dime was in 1880

Dictionary Entries Near five-and-dime

Cite this Entry

“Five-and-dime.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 30 May. 2024.

Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
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