\ ˈthrift How to pronounce thrift (audio) \

Definition of thrift

1 : careful management especially of money
2 : a savings bank or savings and loan association

called also thrift institution

3 : healthy and vigorous growth
4 chiefly Scotland : gainful occupation
5 : any of a genus (Armeria) of low-growing perennial evergreen herbs of the plumbago family especially : a tufted herb (A. maritima) with pink or white flower heads

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Examples of thrift in a Sentence

Through hard work and thrift they sent all of their children to college. through hard work and thrift our father was able to raise the money to put all four of us through college

Recent Examples on the Web

Luckily, thrift stores are full of boomboxes and personal tape players in perfect working order, and stores like Urban Outfitters and Target also offer brand new players. Kara Nesvig, Teen Vogue, "Taylor Swift Released "Lover" On Cassette Tape at Urban Outfitters," 1 Sep. 2019 Some consignment and thrift stores have begun selling online themselves. Lauren Zumbach,, "Secondhand shopping, once stigmatized, is going mainstream. ‘It’s better for the environment, my wallet and morals.’," 29 Aug. 2019 JC Penney and Macy’s just announced deals with ThredUp, an online thrift store. Doreen Christensen,, "Disney to open 25 stores inside Target this fall," 26 Aug. 2019 In the early days, Sigourney shopped for VivvyAnne’s clothes in thrift stores and bought outfits and wigs for a few bucks. Steve Rubenstein,, "Dressing up, creating a scene a perfect fit for drag queen," 25 Aug. 2019 His red flannel shirt is made from thrift store cast-offs, as are his blue jeans. Deanna Weniger, Twin Cities, "Big sale: MPCA’s 17-foot-tall Paul Bunyan statue auctioned at State Fair," 17 Aug. 2019 The chains are partnering with ThreadUp, the world’s largest online thrift store. Doreen Christensen,, "Thrifting at JCP and Macy’s: ThreadUp now in South Florida stores | Doreen’s Deals," 16 Aug. 2019 Archie and Edith’s chairs, purchased for next to nothing in a neighborhood thrift store, were donated to the Smithsonian National Museum of American History in 1978. Joanna Scutts, Curbed, "The shows we’ve lived by," 14 Aug. 2019 The family had a place, decorated with a huge collage of thrift store–bought seascapes, in Paradise Cove, a private waterfront community in Malibu, within walking distance of a secluded stretch of beach. Darryn King, Longreads, "The Young Man and the Sea Sponge," 13 Aug. 2019

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

13th century, in the meaning defined at sense 3

History and Etymology for thrift

Middle English, from Old Norse, prosperity, from thrīfask to thrive

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Statistics for thrift

Last Updated

5 Sep 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for thrift

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

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More Definitions for thrift



English Language Learners Definition of thrift

old-fashioned : careful use of money so that it is not wasted
US : a business like a bank that is used for saving money : a savings bank or a savings and loan association


\ ˈthrift How to pronounce thrift (audio) \

Kids Definition of thrift

: careful management especially of money



Legal Definition of thrift

: an institution that promotes saving and provides mortgages especially : savings and loan association

called also thrift institution

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More from Merriam-Webster on thrift

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with thrift

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for thrift

Spanish Central: Translation of thrift

Nglish: Translation of thrift for Spanish Speakers Encyclopedia article about thrift

Comments on thrift

What made you want to look up thrift? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


one from the Upper Peninsula of Michigan

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