pin money


dated : money given by a man to a woman in his family (such as his wife or daughter) for her own use
… when a New York girl wanted some pin money, she telegraphed to her father, and he sent it up in a wagon.Howard Bronson
: money set aside for the purchase of incidentals
It will take all my pin money for a month. No more soda water for a while, unless someone treats me.Amy Ellen Blanchard
: a trivial amount of money
And Joe said that even if there had been a risk, ten thousand would have been pin money to a man in Bruce's position.Susan Isaacs

Examples of pin money in a Sentence

She had a babysitting job to earn pin money. the summer intern made only pin money but gained valuable work experience
Recent Examples on the Web While the couple slow dances, guests pin money onto their clothes as a sign of prosperity. Sadiba Hasan, New York Times, 4 Nov. 2023 Bonnie and Andrea pocket around $100 a month for spending two hours a week taking surveys, which gives each of them extra pin money. Maria Carter, Woman's Day, 22 May 2017

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

Word History

First Known Use

1674, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

Time Traveler
The first known use of pin money was in 1674

Dictionary Entries Near pin money

Cite this Entry

“Pin money.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 4 Dec. 2023.

Kids Definition

pin money

: money for small expenses
Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
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