\ ˈspend How to pronounce spend (audio) \
spent\ ˈspent How to pronounce spend (audio) \; spending

Definition of spend

transitive verb

1 : to use up or pay out : expend
2a : exhaust, wear out the hurricane gradually spent itself
b : to consume wastefully : squander the waters are not ours to spend— J. R. Ellis
3 : to cause or permit to elapse : pass spend the night

intransitive verb

1 : to expend or waste wealth or strength
2 : to become expended or consumed
3 : to have an orgasm

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Other Words from spend

spendable \ ˈspen-​də-​bəl How to pronounce spend (audio) \ adjective
spender noun

Examples of spend in a Sentence

I spent $30 on his birthday gift. They spend a lot on clothes and cars. I want to buy a new car, but I don't have much money to spend. Her willingness to spend freely made her popular among her friends. He spends lavishly on vacations. I spent my summer at the beach. She spent eight months living in New York City. Relaxing with friends is a great way to spend a weekend. Our cat spends most of his time sleeping. Too much of my time is spent arguing with customers.
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Recent Examples on the Web The district uses tests at the beginning and end of the programs to measure growth, and says results show large gains for the four weeks children spend in the English Language program. al, "Alabama district sees ‘overwhelming’ need for English language summer camp," 28 Apr. 2021 Bruce Van Saun said the company’s 11,000 non-branch employees will be expected to spend a minimum of one day a week in the office starting on June 1. BostonGlobe.com, "Boston employers are embarking on a grand experiment, by shifting their offices to a hybrid model," 27 Apr. 2021 And limiting the length of time people spend in a room can reduce the amount of tiny droplets in the air too and the chances that people will inhale them. Bruce Y. Lee, Forbes, "Did MIT Study Really Challenge 6-Foot Social Distancing For Covid-19 Coronavirus? Here’s What It Said," 26 Apr. 2021 The streamer also announced the cast of the film, including Emma Pasarow (Touch) as Auden West, the main character from the novel who decides to spend the summer before college with her dad, stepmom and step-sister in the beach town of Colby. Jolie Lash, EW.com, "Netflix's To All the Boys I've Loved Before screenwriter adapting YA novel Along for the Ride," 23 Apr. 2021 The city, however, is not planning to spend significantly more in next year’s budget than the current one to clean them up. oregonlive, "Portland leaders kickstart new citywide cleanup effort with $750K," 22 Apr. 2021 Wiley hopes that Pattie Gonia encourages users to spend more time in nature. Isabelle Chapman And Rachel Janfaza, CNN, "Facing a climate crisis, these youth activists stay focused on solutions," 22 Apr. 2021 A few years ago, Melissa Holguin Pineda decided to spend a summer in Seattle with her cousin. Washington Post, "‘Buy Nothing’ groups: A place to share goods, services — and gratitude," 22 Apr. 2021 The state would continue, as in the Senate version, to spend $797 million in the next cycle to ramp up a state law enforcement presence at the Texas-Mexico border. Robert T. Garrett, Dallas News, "Texas House poised to pass cautious $247B budget; rejects plan for more health care for working poor," 22 Apr. 2021

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

13th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1

History and Etymology for spend

Middle English, from Old English -spendan, from Medieval Latin expendere to disburse, use up, from Latin, to measure by weight, pay out — more at expend

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Time Traveler for spend

Time Traveler

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

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Statistics for spend

Last Updated

30 Apr 2021

Cite this Entry

“Spend.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/spend. Accessed 10 May. 2021.

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More Definitions for spend



English Language Learners Definition of spend

: to use (money) to pay for something
: to allow (time) to pass in a particular place or while doing a particular activity
: to use (energy or effort) to do something


\ ˈspend How to pronounce spend (audio) \
spent\ ˈspent \; spending

Kids Definition of spend

1 : to use (money) to pay for something
2 : to cause or allow (as time) to pass … he parked his car … and was spending considerable time walking about town.— Robert McCloskey, Homer Price
3 : to use wastefully : squander She spends a lot of energy worrying.

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More from Merriam-Webster on spend

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for spend

Nglish: Translation of spend for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of spend for Arabic Speakers

Comments on spend

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