noun, often attributive
ex·​change | \ iks-ˈchānj How to pronounce exchange (audio) , ˈeks-ˌchānj How to pronounce exchange (audio) \

Definition of exchange

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : the act of giving or taking one thing in return for another : trade an exchange of prisoners
2a : the act or process of substituting one thing for another
b : reciprocal giving and receiving
3 : something offered, given, or received in an exchange
4a : funds payable currently at a distant point either in a foreign currency or in domestic currency
b(1) : interchange or conversion of the money of two countries or of current and uncurrent money with allowance for difference in value
(3) : the amount of the difference in value between two currencies or between values of a particular currency at two places
c : instruments (such as checks or bills of exchange) presented in a clearinghouse for settlement
5 : a place where things or services are exchanged: such as
a : an organized market or center for trading in securities or commodities
b : a store or shop specializing in merchandise usually of a particular type
c : a cooperative store or society
d : a central office in which telephone lines are connected to permit communication
in exchange
: as a substitute


exchanged; exchanging

Definition of exchange (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

1a : to part with, give, or transfer in consideration of something received as an equivalent
b : to have replaced by other merchandise exchanged the shirt for one in a larger size
2 : to part with for a substitute exchanging future security for immediate pleasure
3 : to give and receive reciprocally exchange gifts

intransitive verb

1 : to pass or become received in exchange
2 : to engage in an exchange

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Other Words from exchange


exchangeability \ iks-​ˌchān-​jə-​ˈbi-​lə-​tē How to pronounce exchange (audio) \ noun
exchangeable \ iks-​ˈchān-​jə-​bəl How to pronounce exchange (audio) \ adjective
exchanger \ iks-​ˈchān-​jər How to pronounce exchange (audio) , ˈeks-​ˌchān-​ \ noun

Examples of exchange in a Sentence

Noun an even exchange of property an angry exchange of insults a useful exchange of information threats of a nuclear exchange Verb We exchanged addresses and promised we'd write each other often. These coupons can be exchanged for food. I'd like to exchange this sweater for a smaller one.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Isackson pleaded guilty to charges related to the scheme shortly after he was arrested in 2019 and agreed to cooperate with the government in exchange for leniency., 14 Sep. 2021 If your goal is to get the visitor to fill out your form in exchange for your free strategy guide, ask for this on your page. Bernard May, Forbes, 14 Sep. 2021 At that time, the Americans rejected Kim's demand for major sanctions relief in exchange for dismantling an aging nuclear complex. Fox News, 13 Sep. 2021 February 13 - North Korea agrees to close its main nuclear reactor in exchange for an aid package worth $400 million. CNN, 12 Sep. 2021 Iran and world powers agreed in 2015 to the nuclear deal, which saw Tehran drastically limit its enrichment of uranium in exchange for the lifting of economic sanctions. Time, 12 Sep. 2021 The Lakers also sent a second-round pick in 2024 and cash to Memphis on Friday in exchange for the draft rights to Chinese big man Wang Zhelin. Greg Beacham, ajc, 11 Sep. 2021 Brockers was acquired from the Rams in exchange for a 2023 seventh-round pick after collecting nine sacks in his past 49 games. Eric Branch, San Francisco Chronicle, 11 Sep. 2021 Then, the Conference of Studio Unions was in a bitter turf war with rival IATSE, which was controlled by the Chicago Mafia, which suppressed wages and strikes in exchange for payouts from studios. Los Angeles Times, 10 Sep. 2021 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb Here’s some distressing, if unsurprising, news from the Office of the National Coordinator: Half of the nation’s hospitals lack the ability to electronically exchange information with public health agencies. Stat Staff, STAT, 15 Sep. 2021 The drivers, a male and female, tried to exchange information but at some point, the female got back in her vehicle and started to drive off, Cervantes said. Gregory Yee Staff Writer, Los Angeles Times, 3 Sep. 2021 Apple relies on the same technology to add, store, and exchange digital driver’s license information. Chris Smith, BGR, 1 Sep. 2021 Police said both parties were presented with the findings of the investigation and agreed to exchange insurance information without criminal charges being filed, according to the release. Brandi Addison, Dallas News, 11 Aug. 2021 Started in 2012, Illinois Foster Parents Support Group provides a platform for its 3,700 members to exchange information, advice and support. Carole Sharwarko,, 6 Aug. 2021 The All-Star Game no longer is a little gathering for players to exchange hardball stories. San Diego Union-Tribune, 13 July 2021 Police say McFarland met a 15-year-old from Arizona through an instant messaging app called Discord and convinced the boy to exchange explicit pictures, starting in November. Jesse Leavenworth,, 3 Sep. 2021 Certainly, the final month of the season will see the Giants and Dodgers bob above and beneath the surface and perhaps exchange the West lead multiple times. Gabe Lacques, USA TODAY, 2 Sep. 2021

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


14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1


15th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1a

History and Etymology for exchange


Middle English exchaunge, from Anglo-French eschange, from eschanger to exchange, from Vulgar Latin *excambiare, from Latin ex- + cambiare to exchange — more at change

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Learn More About exchange

Time Traveler for exchange

Time Traveler

The first known use of exchange was in the 14th century

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Dictionary Entries Near exchange



exchange charge

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Statistics for exchange

Last Updated

17 Sep 2021

Cite this Entry

“Exchange.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 27 Sep. 2021.

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More Definitions for exchange



English Language Learners Definition of exchange

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: an occurrence in which people give things of similar value to each other : the act of giving or taking one thing in return for another thing
: an occurrence in which people direct something at each other
: an occurrence in which people give information to each other



English Language Learners Definition of exchange (Entry 2 of 2)

: to give something and receive something in return
: to direct (words, looks, etc.) at each other
: to return (a product) to a store and have it replaced by another product : to trade (something that has been purchased) for something else


ex·​change | \ iks-ˈchānj How to pronounce exchange (audio) \

Kids Definition of exchange

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : an act of giving or taking of one thing in return for another : trade a fair exchange
2 : a place where goods or services are exchanged
3 : the act of giving and receiving between two groups an exchange of ideas


exchanged; exchanging

Kids Definition of exchange (Entry 2 of 2)

: to give or take one thing in return for another : trade, swap



Legal Definition of exchange

1a : a giving of something of value (as real property) in return for something of equal value (as money or property of a like kind)
b in the civil law of Louisiana : a giving of something of value in return for something of equal value except money — compare sale
2 : an organized market or center for trading in securities or commodities

More from Merriam-Webster on exchange

Nglish: Translation of exchange for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of exchange for Arabic Speakers Encyclopedia article about exchange


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