\ 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

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. See More
Recent Examples on the Web Tax refunds and some special government expenditures are taken off the top of total general revenue collections, leaving a net amount that state agencies are allowed to spend up to the amount authorized by the Revenue Stabilization Act. Michael R. Wickline, Arkansas Online, 3 Aug. 2022 After more than a year of trying — and failing — to pack much of President Biden’s domestic agenda into a single tax-and-spend bill, Democrats appear to have finally found a workable combination. Jim Tankersley, BostonGlobe.com, 2 Aug. 2022 At a time of economic uncertainty and Americans citing rising inflation and gas prices as their top concerns, Mr. Biden has been forced to spend a significant amount of his first year and a half in office grappling with international crises. Ken Thomas, WSJ, 2 Aug. 2022 Smith-Schuster was one of several receivers to spend the offseason running routes for Mahomes in the Dallas area, and the extra repetitions have seemed to help. Jeff Fedotin, Forbes, 1 Aug. 2022 In June, Elon Musk, having grown fed up with the pandemic-era shift toward remote work, demanded that his employees spend forty hours a week in the Tesla office or risk expulsion. Carrie Battan, The New Yorker, 1 Aug. 2022 The largest allocation of $7.5 million will be divided among the three commissioners ($2.5 million apiece) to spend within their districts. al, 1 Aug. 2022 To accomplish that, locomotive manufacturer Wabtec will strip down the locomotives, and spend eight weeks overhauling their engines and installing new software and electronic controls. From Usa Today Network And Wire Reports, USA TODAY, 1 Aug. 2022 The Climate Action Plan determines where and how San Diego will spend millions of dollars. Tammy Murga, San Diego Union-Tribune, 1 Aug. 2022 See More

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.

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

Learn More About spend

Time Traveler for spend

Time Traveler

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

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Dictionary Entries Near spend

Spencer roll



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Statistics for spend

Last Updated

4 Aug 2022

Cite this Entry

“Spend.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/spend. Accessed 12 Aug. 2022.

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More Definitions for spend


\ 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.

More from Merriam-Webster on spend

Nglish: Translation of spend for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of spend for Arabic Speakers


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