View synonyms for exchange


[ iks-cheynj ]

verb (used with object)

, ex·changed, ex·chang·ing.
  1. to give up (something) for something else; part with for some equivalent; change for another.

    Synonyms: swap, trade, barter, commute, interchange

  2. to replace (returned merchandise) with an equivalent or something else:

    Most stores will allow the purchaser to exchange goods.

  3. to give and receive reciprocally; interchange:

    to exchange blows; to exchange gifts.

  4. to part with in return for some equivalent; transfer for a recompense; barter:

    to exchange goods with foreign countries.

  5. Chess. to capture (an enemy piece) in return for a capture by the opponent generally of pieces of equal value.

verb (used without object)

, ex·changed, ex·chang·ing.
  1. to make an exchange; engage in bartering, replacing, or substituting one thing for another.
  2. to pass or be taken in exchange or as an equivalent.


  1. the act, process, or an instance of exchanging:

    The contesting nations arranged for an exchange of prisoners; money in exchange for services.

    Synonyms: barter, commerce, business, traffic, trade, interchange

  2. something that is given or received in exchange or substitution for something else:

    The car was a fair exchange.

  3. a place for buying and selling commodities, securities, etc., typically open only to members.

    Synonyms: market

  4. a central office or central station:

    a telephone exchange.

  5. the method or system by which debits and credits in different places are settled without the actual transfer of money, by means of bills of exchange representing money values.
  6. the discharge of obligations in different places by the transfer of credits.
  7. the amount or percentage charged for exchanging money, collecting a draft, etc.
  8. the reciprocal transfer of equivalent sums of money, as in the currencies of two different countries.
  9. the giving or receiving of a sum of money in one place for a bill ordering the payment of an equivalent sum in another.
  10. the amount of the difference in value between two or more currencies, or between the values of the same currency at two or more places.
  11. the checks, drafts, etc., exchanged at a clearinghouse.
  12. Chess. a reciprocal capture of pieces of equivalent value by opponents in a single series of moves.


/ ɪksˈtʃeɪndʒ /


  1. tr to give up, part with, or transfer (one thing) for an equivalent

    to exchange francs for dollars

    to exchange gifts

  2. tr to give and receive (information, ideas, etc); interchange
  3. tr to replace (one thing) with another, esp to replace unsatisfactory goods
  4. to transfer or hand over (goods) in return for the equivalent value in kind rather than in money; barter; trade
  5. tr chess to capture and surrender (pieces, usually of the same value) in a single sequence of moves


  1. the act or process of exchanging
    1. anything given or received as an equivalent, replacement, or substitute for something else
    2. ( as modifier )

      an exchange student

  2. an argument or quarrel; altercation

    the two men had a bitter exchange

  3. Also calledtelephone exchange a switching centre in which telephone lines are interconnected
    1. a place where securities or commodities are sold, bought, or traded, esp by brokers or merchants

      a stock exchange

      a corn exchange

    2. ( as modifier )

      an exchange broker

    1. the system by which commercial debts between parties in different places are settled by commercial documents, esp bills of exchange, instead of by direct payment of money
    2. the percentage or fee charged for accepting payment in this manner
  4. a transfer or interchange of sums of money of equivalent value, as between different national currencies or different issues of the same currency
  5. often plural the cheques, drafts, bills, etc, exchanged or settled between banks in a clearing house
  6. chess the capture by both players of pieces of equal value, usually on consecutive moves
  7. lose the exchange
    chess to lose a rook in return for a bishop or knight
  8. win the exchange
    chess to win a rook in return for a bishop or knight
  9. med another word for transfusion
  10. physics a process in which a particle is transferred between two nucleons, such as the transfer of a meson between two nucleons

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Derived Forms

  • exˈchangeable, adjective
  • exˈchangeably, adverb
  • exˌchangeaˈbility, noun

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Other Words From

  • ex·changer noun
  • preex·change verb (used with object) preexchanged preexchanging
  • reex·change verb reexchanged reexchanging
  • unex·changed adjective

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Word History and Origins

Origin of exchange1

First recorded in 1250–1300; (for the verb) Middle English eschaungen, from Anglo-French eschaungier, from Vulgar Latin excambiāre (unrecorded); equivalent to ex- 1 + change ); noun derivative of the verb

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Word History and Origins

Origin of exchange1

C14: from Anglo-French eschaungier, from Vulgar Latin excambiāre (unattested), from Latin cambīre to barter

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Idioms and Phrases

see in exchange .

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Example Sentences

In an email exchange a friend said many had repeated this same succinct review but they could never elaborate.

And it must make sure that the platform of debate where we can freely exchange ideas is safe and sound.

Gift cards are sold at kiosks in shopping malls or even websites that catering to this exchange market.

Gross and an unnamed American intelligence agent were freed Wednesday in exchange for three Cuban spies.

In just a few hours on Tuesday, the dollar exchange rate collapsed from 64 to 80 rubles before climbing back to about 68.

It was very warm, and for a while they did nothing but exchange remarks about the heat, the sun, the glare.

Tatham says, "Even the tavern keepers were compelled to exchange a dinner for a few pounds of tobacco."

The Berlin exchange, while war was as yet only a dreaded possibility, rose from 20 m. 50 pf.

As already indicated, money may be said to circulate only when it passes in exchange for goods.

He would not want to exchange his splendid father for all the glory and magnificence of the king's court.


Related Words

Definitions and idiom definitions from Unabridged, based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023

Idioms from The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.