ways and means

plural noun

: methods and resources for accomplishing something and especially for defraying expenses
often capitalized W&M
: methods and resources for raising the necessary revenues for the expenses of a nation or state
: a legislative committee concerned with this function

Examples of ways and means in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web The council returned three ordinances seeking appropriations of ARPA funds seeking to hire an ARPA manager, fund a joint broadband infrastructure project, and establish a leadership and job training development program, to the ways and means committee without discussion. Carrie Napoleon, chicagotribune.com, 23 Dec. 2021 The year the Jamaica Plain Democrat served on the ways and means panel, both the House and Senate’s Ways and Means Committees and the Health Care Financing Committee held a large joint hearing on changes to MassHealth, a public event that filled the State House’s 600-seat Gardner Auditorium. Samantha J. Gross, BostonGlobe.com, 25 July 2023 Fernandes Anderson is the chair of the council’s ways and means committee, which serves a central role in overseeing the budget process. Danny McDonald, BostonGlobe.com, 5 July 2023 On Friday, the ways and means committee sent the bill for a vote on the Senate floor. Andrew Selsky, Fortune, 26 Mar. 2023 All are also on committees of importance to GE: Calvert is on the appropriations subcommittees for defense and energy spending, Graves is the top Republican on the committee overseeing transportation and infrastructure, and Estes is on the ways and means subcommittee overseeing taxation. Alec MacGillis, ProPublica, 1 Nov. 2022 But the third time might be the charm for MassPack, if the Senate ways and means language wins out. Jon Chesto, BostonGlobe.com, 8 Mar. 2023 But just as the nature of the attacks varies by locale, so do the ways and means of deterring them available to local communities. Brian Handwerk, Smithsonian Magazine, 31 Jan. 2023 The future of art and design is a highly hybrid future that mixes traditional physical expressions of originality and creativity with highly digitalized ways and means of selling art. Mirjana Perkovic, Forbes, 24 June 2021

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'ways and means.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

First Known Use

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of ways and means was in the 15th century

Dictionary Entries Near ways and means

Cite this Entry

“Ways and means.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/ways%20and%20means. Accessed 14 Jun. 2024.

Legal Definition

ways and means

noun plural
: methods and resources for raising the necessary revenues for the expenses of a nation or state
often capitalized W&M : a legislative committee with jurisdiction over ways and means
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