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pen·​sion ˈpen(t)-shən How to pronounce pension (audio)
ˈpen(t)-shən How to pronounce pension (audio) : a fixed sum paid regularly to a person:
archaic : wage
: a gratuity granted (as by a government) as a favor or reward
: one paid under given conditions to a person following retirement from service or to surviving dependents
\ päⁿ-​ˈsyōⁿ How to pronounce pension (audio) \ [French, from Middle French]
: accommodations especially at a continental European hotel or boardinghouse : room and board
or less commonly pensione [pensione, from Italian] : a hotel or boardinghouse especially in continental Europe
pensionless adjective


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pensioned; pensioning ˈpen(t)-sh(ə-)niŋ How to pronounce pension (audio)

transitive verb

: to grant or pay a pension to
: to dismiss or retire from service with a pension
pensioned off his faithful old servant

Examples of pension in a Sentence

Noun Her pension arrives in the mail every month. retired people living on their pensions
Recent Examples on the Web
Day, for example, said a comprehensive audit of CPS and lobbying for state lawmakers to revisit pension reform for the district is needed. Molly Morrow, Chicago Tribune, 11 July 2024 This amount included all the weekly pay, pension, health, and parental leave contributions owed as well as more than $1 million in interest. Erik Pedersen, Deadline, 10 July 2024
How much will pension payments drop in 2023? Phoebe Wall Howard, USA TODAY, 8 Dec. 2022 The plans kick in on Nov. 1 and apply to eligible state and local law enforcement, firefighters, emergency response personnel, pensioned retirees, as well as parents, children, or spouses of first responders killed in the line of duty. Edward C. Baig, USA TODAY, 28 Oct. 2019 See all Example Sentences for pension 

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

Word History



Middle English, from Anglo-French, from Latin pension-, pensio, from pendere to pay — more at pendant

First Known Use


14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1


1598, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of pension was in the 14th century

Dictionary Entries Near pension

Cite this Entry

“Pension.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 19 Jul. 2024.

Kids Definition


1 of 2 noun
pen·​sion ˈpen-chən How to pronounce pension (audio)
: a sum paid regularly to a person especially following retirement or to surviving dependents


2 of 2 verb
pensioned; pensioning ˈpench-(ə-)niŋ How to pronounce pension (audio)
: to pay a pension to

Legal Definition


: money paid under given conditions to a person following retirement or to surviving dependents see also defined benefit plan, defined contribution plan
Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
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