- to gain or get in return for one's labor or service: to earn one's living.
- to merit as compensation, as for service; deserve: to receive more than one has earned.
- to acquire through merit: to earn a reputation for honesty.
- to gain as due return or profit: Savings accounts earn interest.
- to bring about or cause deservedly: His fair dealing earned our confidence.
- to gain income: securities that earn on a quarterly basis.
Origin of earn1
SynonymsSee more synonyms on Thesaurus.com
Examples from the Web for earner
Thanks to the presence of blackface and KKK costumes, her offensive fete went viral and earner her instant infamy.Why It’s Time to End Blackface, Finally
October 31, 2013
For a $50,000 earner, that meant paying $1,000 a year less in payroll taxes.Michael Tomasky: GOP Is Set to Self-Destruct Over Payroll Tax
November 29, 2011
A $50,000 earner (married, filing separately, as all these examples will be) pays 17.25 percent.Perry's Ridiculous Tax Plan
October 24, 2011
Why should it continue to be paid out after the earner has died?A World by the Tale
Gordon Randall Garrett
As you are heading now, you will never be an earner—it is more likely that you will be a spender—of money.A Jolly by Josh
But to take the earner, is compound, superlative, perpetual theft.
Does the power to rob a man of his earnings, rob the earner of his right to them?
Round the earner from his lodgings on a side street and in darkness, stood a big car with the motor puffing violently.Civilization
Ellen Newbold La Motte
- a person who earns money
- British and Australian informal an activity or thing that produces income, esp illicitlya nice little earner
- to gain or be paid (money or other payment) in return for work or service
- (tr) to acquire, merit, or deserve through behaviour or actionhe has earned a name for duplicity
- (tr) (of securities, investments, etc) to gain (interest, return, profit, etc)
Word Origin and History for earner
1610s, agent noun from earn.
Old English earnian "deserve, earn, merit, win, get a reward for labor," from Proto-Germanic *aznojan (cf. Old Frisian esna "reward, pay"), from *azna "labor" especially "field labor" (cf. Old Norse önn "work in the field"), from PIE *aznon "to do harvest work, serve" (cf. Old High German arnon "to reap"), denominative verb from *es-en- "harvest, fall" (cf. Old High German aren "harvest, crop," German Ernte "harvest," Old English ern "harvest," Gothic asans "harvest, summer," Old Church Slavonic jeseni, Russian osen, Old Prussian assanis "autumn").
Also from the same root are Gothic asneis, Old High German esni "hired laborer, day laborer," Old English esne "serf, laborer, man." Related: Earned; earning.