Definition of pecuniary
1 : consisting of or measured in money pecuniary aid pecuniary gifts
2 : of or relating to money pecuniary needs pecuniary rewards
pecuniarilyplay \pi-ˌkyü-nē-ˈer-ə-lē\ adverb
pecuniary was our Word of the Day on 10/13/2013. Hear the podcast!
Examples of pecuniary in a sentence
that makes good pecuniary sense
the judge recused himself from the case because he had a pecuniary interest in the company that was being sued
Did You Know?
Pecuniary first appeared in English in the early 16th century and comes from the Latin word pecunia, which means "money." Both this root and Latin peculium, which means "private property," are related to the Latin noun for cattle, pecus. In early times, cattle were viewed as a trading commodity (as they still are in some parts of the world), and property was often valued in terms of cattle. Pecunia has also given us impecunious, a word meaning "having little or no money," while peculium gave us peculate, a synonym for "embezzle." In peculium you might also recognize the word peculiar, which originally meant "exclusively one's own" or "distinctive" before acquiring its current meaning of "strange."
Origin and Etymology of pecuniary
Latin pecuniarius, from pecunia money — more at fee
First Known Use: 1506
PECUNIARY Defined for English Language Learners
Definition of pecuniary for English Language Learners
: relating to or in the form of money
Legal Definition of pecuniary
: consisting of, measured in, or relating to money pecuniary damages
Seen and Heard
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