give·​back | \ ˈgiv-ˌbak How to pronounce giveback (audio) \

Definition of giveback

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a previous gain (such as an increase in wages or benefits) given back to management by workers (as in a labor contract)

give back

gave back; given back; giving back; gives back

Definition of give back (Entry 2 of 2)

intransitive verb

1 : to provide help or financial assistance to others in appreciation of one's own success or good fortune … Gardner has refined the art of giving back by plowing 10 percent or more of his earnings into school and educational projects.— Ernest Holsendolph No longer on the fringes of travel, voluntourism has attracted increasing numbers of travelers looking to learn new skills, meet people, and give back to the global community.— Manya Chylinski The community had people with time to volunteer and give back.— Joshua Macht
2 archaic : retire, retreat … the enemy gave back— P. G. Wodehouse … it is certain that he gave back and ordered his soldiers to commence a slow and guarded retreat.— Nathaniel Hawthorne

Examples of giveback in a Sentence

Noun The union had to agree to certain givebacks in order to save the jobs of all its members.
Recent Examples on the Web: Noun The idea was simple: give back unneeded money to the taxpayers and provide incentives for lawmakers to increase that giveback by holding down spending, according to news accounts at the time. Rich Exner,, "Ohio used to simply refund money to taxpayers when it collected too much," 18 June 2019 Accounted for in this year’s budget is about $10 million in corporate donations and another $10 million in union givebacks. Matthew Ormseth, Courant Community, "With Council Approval, Hartford's $570 Million Budget Heads To Oversight Panel," 30 May 2018 Those savings stem from givebacks in new union contracts agreed to over the last two years. Jenna Carlesso, Courant Community, "Five Takeaways From Hartford Mayor Luke Bronin's New Budget," 17 Apr. 2018 Canada's prime minister, Justin Trudeau, isn't up for election until the fall of 2019, and as such, may have more reason to try to extend negotiations in an effort to lessen any givebacks. Don Lee,, "Trump is pushing hard to reach NAFTA agreement, both with trading partners and with Congress," 24 Apr. 2018 Most of Hartford’s unions have agreed to substantial givebacks over the last two years, but the city is still negotiating with two groups. Jenna Carlesso, Courant Community, "Hartford Mayor Luke Bronin's Budget Will Face New Scrutiny From Oversight Board," 15 Apr. 2018 Bronin’s budget includes $10 million in savings from union givebacks that were agreed to over the last two years. Jenna Carlesso, Courant Community, "Hartford Mayor Luke Bronin Releases Spending Plan Amid State Scrutiny," 16 Apr. 2018 Teachers and administrators have already agreed to givebacks in their contracts, including a higher deductible for health insurance, said McKenna. Janice Steinhagen, Courant Community, "Plainfield, Griswold Grapple With ECS Funding Cuts," 14 Dec. 2017 In his letter to Malloy and lawmakers, Bronin has asked the state to help the city put pressure on bondholders by making new money contingent on Wall Street givebacks. Jenna Carlesso, Courant Community, "Bond Insurer: Hartford Bankruptcy Would Be 'Black Eye' For State," 25 Sep. 2017 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb First and foremost, DeGray said he has been motivated by a desire to give back and help others within his community. Melanie Savage,, "Hebron Volunteer Fire Department Honors 60-Year Member," 2 Dec. 2019 So, being able to give back and inspire kids and help out my community is probably one of the best things in the world. Tom Orsborn,, "Lonnie Walker IV eager to bring ‘joy, laughter’ to needy this Thanksgiving," 25 Nov. 2019 Part of the business plan at CHASSE is to give back to the community, and the PAC contributions are one way, said Joe Holcombe, executive vice president at CHASSE. Jen Fifield, azcentral, "Dysart school district's bond requests could build 2 new schools. What voters should know," 24 Oct. 2019 This was my small part in giving back and bringing the art home and accomplishing a dream on my own path. NBC News, "Bruce Lee's studio in L.A.'s Chinatown has reopened after 50 years," 23 Oct. 2019 That tradition has stuck, and now Sweetest Day is known as a reminder to give back and take care of those who need extra attention. Madeline Mitchell,, "Today is National Sweetest Day. How is it different from Valentine's Day?," 19 Oct. 2019 The purpose of this trip was to give back and uplift an underserved community. Danielle Pointdujour, Essence, "Has Travel Become More About The Influence Than The Actual Experience?," 3 Oct. 2019 The H2O Foundation Scholarship was established for deserving students who want to attend college, with an emphasis on applicants who have the desire to give back to the local community through service. Sam Boyer,, "Unique fundraiser required ear plugs: Photos," 15 Sep. 2019 Is there a way to give back to it in a way that isn’t just a transfer of value to BuzzFeed? Nilay Patel, The Verge, "Exclusive: Automattic CEO Matt Mullenweg on what’s next for Tumblr," 14 Aug. 2019

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


1978, in the meaning defined above


13th century, in the meaning defined at sense 2

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The first known use of giveback was in the 13th century

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Cite this Entry

“Giveback.” The Dictionary, Merriam-Webster Inc., Accessed 10 December 2019.

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How to pronounce give back (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of giveback

US, business : a previous gain (such as increased wages or benefits) that is given back to a company by workers as part of an agreement


give·​back | \ ˈgiv-ˌbak How to pronounce giveback (audio) \

Legal Definition of giveback

: a previous gain (as an increase in wages or benefits) given back to management by workers (as in a labor contract)

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Comments on giveback

What made you want to look up giveback? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


to state or do over again or repeatedly

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