vig·​o·​rish | \ ˈvi-gə-rish How to pronounce vigorish (audio) \

Definition of vigorish

1 : a charge taken (as by a bookie or a gambling house) on bets also : the degree of such a charge a vigorish of five percent
2 : interest paid to a moneylender

Examples of vigorish in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web In sports betting, the vigorish, or vig, is typically -110 for spread and total bets. Christopher Smith, al, "Why it’s impossible to win money betting on Alabama games," 17 Sep. 2019 Moreover, Ernst is on record as favoring the privatization of Social Security, which means turning over the most successful government program in history to Wall Street, so that bankers can extract their vigorish. Los Angeles Times, "Column: A Republican senator hints at gutting Social Security ‘behind closed doors’," 6 Sep. 2019 In terms of building regular traffic, state lawmakers have every urgency to ensure that customers pay no more than the usual 10 percent vigorish. Steve Rosenbloom,, "A big idea that could give Illinois sports gamblers the best price," 17 May 2018 Fezzik said the sports betting math works like this: 52.4% is breaking even (because the casinos keep a small percentage of each bet as a service charge known as the vigorish). Josh Peter, USA TODAY, "Is this the future face of sports gambling?," 26 Dec. 2017 Our guest on Beyond The Stripes tonight is rising star LB Nick Vigil (pronounced Vig, as in vigorish -il). Rhymes with squiggle. Paul Daugherty,, "Paul Daugherty: Should Bengals trade for lineman?," 31 Oct. 2017 There was no need for a credit card reader, cutting point-of- sale system providers — and their vigorish — out of the equation. Daniel Roth, WIRED, "The Future of Money: It’s Flexible, Frictionless and (Almost) Free," 22 Feb. 2010 A more modern way to adjust the odds without the danger of a middle is adjusting the extra money, or vigorish, that bettors must pay. Victor Mather, New York Times, "Super Bowl Challenges Wisdom of Crowds and Oddsmakers," 27 Jan. 2016

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'vigorish.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

See More

First Known Use of vigorish

1912, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for vigorish

perhaps from Ukrainian vygrash or Russian vyigrysh winnings, profit

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about vigorish

Time Traveler for vigorish

Time Traveler

The first known use of vigorish was in 1912

See more words from the same year

Statistics for vigorish

Cite this Entry

“Vigorish.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 11 May. 2021.

Style: MLA
MLACheck Mark Icon ChicagoCheck Mark Icon APACheck Mark Icon Merriam-WebsterCheck Mark Icon

Comments on vigorish

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


Test Your Vocabulary

Star Wars Words Quiz

  • cu jedi training
  • The bounty portion of bounty hunters (such as Boba Fett) comes from a Latin word meaning
How Strong Is Your Vocabulary?

Test your vocabulary with our 10-question quiz!

 AlphaBear 2

Spell words. Make bears.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!