lar·​gesse lär-ˈzhes How to pronounce largesse (audio) lär-ˈjes How to pronounce largesse (audio)
 also  ˈlär-ˌjes
variants or less commonly largess
: liberal giving (as of money) to or as if to an inferior
a philanthropist known for his largesse
also : something so given
projects depending on a flow of federal largesse
: generosity
his generosity of spirit, an absolutely natural largesse Harvey Breit

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The word largesse, which also can be spelled largess, comes from Anglo-French large, meaning "generous."

Example Sentences

He relied on the largesse of friends after he lost his job.
Recent Examples on the Web Protect Our Future was the primary recipient of his midterm largesse and received $27 million from the crypto magnate, making him by far the PAC's largest donor. Thomas Catenacci, Fox News, 11 Nov. 2022 The investment comes from money the city set aside its from $420 million federal largesse in American Rescue Plan funding, intended originally as a safeguard in case revenue replacement was needed for the city budget, the mayor said. The Indianapolis Star, 10 Nov. 2022 Their largesse accounted for more than 10% of all federal political spending, despite their miniscule share of the population – 0.0003% of U.S. adults, according to Forbes and census data. USA Today, 26 Oct. 2022 The target of Kelsey’s largesse is aware of the spending, though unfamiliar with the man behind it. Mark Pazniokas, Hartford Courant, 28 Oct. 2022 Instead, animation producers bringing new projects to market have looked to linear broadcasters to boost discoverability while using toy-licensing deals (or public funds, depending on government largesse) to bridge production financing gaps. Emily Longeretta, Variety, 13 Oct. 2022 Corruption and mismanagement have roiled nations benefiting from the largesse. Jacob Carpenter, Fortune, 12 Aug. 2022 Republican lawmakers, whose votes are not needed to enact a budget in a Legislature dominated by Democrats, say the largesse in tax revenue merits a permanent cut in taxes and investments in large water storage projects. John Myers, Los Angeles Times, 13 May 2022 This rosy financial picture has led many governors and legislatures to propose sharing the largesse with their residents – either through income tax cuts or one-time refunds. Maeve Reston, CNN, 26 Mar. 2022 See More

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'largesse.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

Word History


Middle English largesse, from Anglo-French, from large

First Known Use

13th century, in the meaning defined at sense 2

Time Traveler
The first known use of largesse was in the 13th century


Dictionary Entries Near largesse

Cite this Entry

“Largesse.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 9 Dec. 2022.

Kids Definition


variants also largess
: generous giving
: a generous gift

More from Merriam-Webster on largesse

Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
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