spend

spend, *expend, disburse can mean to pay out money or an equivalent of money for something or in expectation of some return.
Spend is the ordinary term; it may be used regardless of the amount dealt out in the purchase of something
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spend a nickel for candy

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spend fifty dollars for a dress

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the government during the first year of the war spent billions of dollars

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In intransitive use it requires usually an adverb or adverbial phrase to indicate the extent to which money or, by extension, its equivalent, is paid out
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he has never known how it feels to spend freely

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the Pentagon spends so wastefully that we could cut our military budget at least 25 percent— Catton

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this world in arms is not spending money alone. It is spending the sweat of its laborers, the genius of its scientists, the hopes of its children— Eisenhower

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However the word is often used with so little implication of an immediate or direct or commensurate return and with objects so remotely equivalent to money that it comes to imply a using in such a manner as to exhaust, drain, or deplete
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spend six months searching for the home they wished to buy

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spent her small store of energy with caution

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man after man spends himself in this cause— Carlyle

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decided on a whim to spend the day like a yo-yo shuttling on the subway back and forth underneath 42nd Street— Pynchon

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spend his life and his blood in the service of the king

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Expend comes very close to spend in meaning, but it tends to be used more in reference to business, industry, finance, or government than in reference to private persons and therefore to imply larger sums or more determinate ends
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the social services upon which public revenue is expendedHobson

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In its extended use, too, expend tends to imply largeness of outgo and often, like spend, suggests a depleting or exhausting of what is being used
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we have expended our resources—both human and natural—without stint— Truman

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youth is always giving itself, expending itself— Yeats

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but it not infrequently carries an added suggestion of futility that is not apparent in spend
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much thought had been expended, but little accomplished— Dawson & Wilson

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the tons of printer's ink and newsprint expended during the course of the hearings— Wall Street Jour.

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all the social feeling and intellectual effort . . . seemed to have expended themselves— John Morley

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Disburse basically implies the paying out of money (as from public revenues, a huge fortune, an institutional income, or a society's funds), but it also may imply distribution (as to pensioners or among heirs) and often stresses an acting under authority in such paying or distributing
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the treasurer has disbursed nearly five thousand dollars of emergency funds for repair of the clubhouse

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our time and our money, even though disbursed by governmental authority— Hambly

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waiting for the teller to disburse those complex payroll accounts— Morley

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When extended to nonmonetary matters, disburse is likely to stress distribution
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the hundred kilograms of uranium . . . was designated for research only, and was to be disbursed under strictly bilateral agreements— Lear

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Analogous words: *distribute, dispense, divide, deal, dole: *allot, assign, allocate, apportion: *scatter, disperse, dissipate: *pay, compensate, remunerate
Antonyms: save

New Dictionary of Synonyms. 2014.

Synonyms:

Look at other dictionaries:

  • spend — W1S1 [spend] v past tense and past participle spent [spent] ▬▬▬▬▬▬▬ 1¦(money)¦ 2¦(time)¦ 3 4¦(force/effort)¦ 5 spend a penny ▬▬▬▬▬▬▬ [Date: 1100 1200; Origin: Partly from Latin expendere ( EXPEND) and partly, later, from Old French …   Dictionary of contemporary English

  • spend — [ spend ] (past tense and past participle spent [ spent ] ) verb *** 1. ) intransitive or transitive to use money to pay for things: How much money did you spend? spend for: This year we will spend more money for medical care. spend something… …   Usage of the words and phrases in modern English

  • spend — /spend/ past tense and past participle spent /spent/ verb 1 MONEY (I, T) to use your money to buy or pay for things: spend money/ 5/$10/a lot: I spent so much money this weekend! | spend money etc on sth: More money should be spent on health and… …   Longman dictionary of contemporary English

  • Spend — Spend, v. t. [imp. & p. p. {Spent}; p. pr. & vb. n. {Spending}.] [AS. spendan (in comp.), fr. L. expendere or dispendere to weigh out, to expend, dispense. See {Pendant}, and cf. {Dispend}, {Expend}, {Spence}, {Spencer}.] 1. To weigh or lay out;… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • spend — /spend/, v., spent, spending. v.t. 1. to pay out, disburse, or expend; dispose of (money, wealth, resources, etc.): resisting the temptation to spend one s money. 2. to employ (labor, thought, words, time, etc.), as on some object or in some… …   Universalium

  • spend´er — spend «spehnd», verb, spent, spend|ing. –v.t. 1. to pay out: »She spent ten dollars shopping for food today. 2. to use (labor, material, thought, or some other re …   Useful english dictionary

  • spend*/*/*/ — [spend] (past tense and past participle spent [spent] ) verb 1) [I/T] to use money to pay for things How much money did you spend?[/ex] You spend too much on clothes.[/ex] 2) [T] to stay somewhere, or to do something, for a period of time We… …   Dictionary for writing and speaking English

  • spend — ► VERB (past and past part. spent) 1) pay out (money) in buying or hiring goods or services. 2) use or use up (energy or resources); exhaust. 3) pass (time) in a specified way. ► NOUN informal ▪ an amount of money paid out. ● …   English terms dictionary

  • Spend — Spend, v. i. 1. To expend money or any other possession; to consume, use, waste, or part with, anything; as, he who gets easily spends freely. [1913 Webster] He spends as a person who knows that he must come to a reckoning. South. [1913 Webster]… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • spend — [v1] give, pay out absorb, allocate, ante up*, apply, bestow, blow*, cast away, come across, come through, concentrate, confer, consume, contribute, cough up*, defray, deplete, disburse, dispense, dissipate, donate, drain, drop, employ, empty,… …   New thesaurus

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