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[ri-koop] /rɪˈkup/
verb (used with object)
to get back the equivalent of:
to recoup one's losses by a lucky investment.
to regain or recover.
to reimburse or indemnify; pay back:
to recoup a person for expenses.
Law. to withhold (a portion of something due), having some rightful claim to do so.
verb (used without object)
to get back an equivalent, as of something lost.
Law. to plead in defense a claim arising out of the same subject matter as the plaintiff's claim.
an act of recouping.
Origin of recoup
late Middle English
1400-50; late Middle English < Middle French recouper to cut back, cut again, equivalent to re- re- + couper to cut; see coup1
Related forms
recoupable, adjective
recoupment, noun
nonrecoupable, adjective
unrecoupable, adjective
1. recover, restore, retrieve, balance. 3. recompense, remunerate. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for recouped
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • He had recouped himself for the overcharge on the cup of tea.

  • At least the bread-and-butter must be recouped an hundredfold.

  • Unlike any other commercial commodity, news once lost cannot be recouped.

    The Arena Various
  • It would be years, if ever, before such a loss could be recouped, however the traffic was increased.

  • The whole cost of sewage disposal was recouped from the sale of the farm products.

    Psychotherapy James J. Walsh
  • The cost thus incurred would be recouped many times over through its prevention of disease.

    Valere Aude Louis Dechmann
  • He had recouped himself by some ridiculous display of vanity which, as he knew, put him still more at her mercy.

    Night and Day Virginia Woolf
  • Harding was not sure that the expense could be recouped for a time, but he believed the undertaking would pay in the end.

    Harding of Allenwood Harold Bindloss
British Dictionary definitions for recouped


to regain or make good (a financial or other loss)
(transitive) to reimburse or compensate (someone), as for a loss
(law) to keep back (something due), having rightful claim to do so; withhold; deduct
Derived Forms
recoupable, adjective
recoupment, noun
Word Origin
C15: from Old French recouper to cut back, from re- + couper to cut, from coper to behead; see coup1
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for recouped



1620s, from French recouper "to cut back" (12c.), from Old French re- "back" (see re-) + couper "to cut," from coup "a blow" (see coup). Originally a legal term meaning "to deduct;" sense of "to recompense for loss or expense" first recorded 1660s. Related: Recouped; recouping.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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