sweep·​stakes | \ ˈswēp-ˌstāks How to pronounce sweepstakes (audio) \
also sweep-stake\ ˈswēp-​ˌstāk How to pronounce sweep-stake (audio) \

Definition of sweepstakes

1a : a race or contest in which the entire prize may be awarded to the winner specifically : stakes race
2 : any of various lotteries

Examples of sweepstakes in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Each month, you'll be entered into a $10,000 sweepstakes. Kelly Corbett, House Beautiful, "11 Ways You Can Make Money From Home," 8 June 2020 The Great American Takeout and Heinz are holding a ketchup art sweepstakes. Kelly Tyko, USA TODAY, "National French Fry Day 2020: Get free fries at McDonald's and deals at Burger King, KFC, Checkers on Monday," 13 July 2020 The winner of the Alexis Lafrenière sweepstakes is … Qualifier Team H? Helene St. James, Detroit Free Press, "NHL draft lottery countdown: Will Detroit Red Wings finally luck out and pick first?," 25 June 2020 One will be up for auction and another will be available through a sweepstakes. Scott Patsko, cleveland, "Browns offering fans a chance to script plays with Kevin Stefanski to benefit coronavirus relief," 22 May 2020 At noon Friday, a sweepstakes software program will pick the lucky winner, who will have five days to claim the prize of a lifetime. John Maccormack, ExpressNews.com, "Win a full pallet of toilet paper!," 13 May 2020 New York Giants greats including Strahan, Eli Manning, Phil Simms and Justin Tuck announced an opportunity through a sweepstakes for one fan to play a game of touch football with the players in their own backyard and get a Super Bowl ring. Fox News, "Tina Fey announces telethon raised $115M for coronavirus relief efforts in New York," 12 May 2020 That prize will be awarded through a fan sweepstakes, rather than the three-day auction, and IMS will announce details on how to enter in the coming days. Nathan Brown, Indianapolis Star, "IndyCar, IMS to auction off fan experiences to support non-profits battling the coronavirus," 6 May 2020 There is a sweepstakes category, where for as little as $10 a winner can receive an experience or merchandise from a celebrity. oregonlive, "Trail Blazers’ C.J. McCollum pledges ticket and winery tour package in All-In Challenge, Damian Lillard working on an offer," 21 Apr. 2020

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

1774, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for sweepstakes

Middle English swepestake one who wins all the stakes in a game, from swepen to sweep + stake

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Time Traveler for sweepstakes

Time Traveler

The first known use of sweepstakes was in 1774

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Statistics for sweepstakes

Last Updated

12 Aug 2020

Cite this Entry

“Sweepstakes.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/sweepstakes. Accessed 14 Aug. 2020.

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More Definitions for sweepstakes


How to pronounce sweepstakes (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of sweepstakes

: a race or contest in which the winner receives all the prize money


noun plural
sweep·​stakes | \ ˈswēp-ˌstāks How to pronounce sweepstakes (audio) \

Kids Definition of sweepstakes

: a contest in which money or prizes are given to winners picked by chance (as by drawing names)
Hint: Sweepstakes can be used as a singular or a plural in writing and speaking.

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More from Merriam-Webster on sweepstakes

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for sweepstakes

Spanish Central: Translation of sweepstakes

Nglish: Translation of sweepstakes for Spanish Speakers

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