- money, food, or other donations given to the poor or needy; anything given as charity: The hands of the beggars were outstretched for alms.
Origin of alms
Examples from the Web for alms
Another piece might cause people to come up short is an elaborate green Burmese Buddhist alms bowl on a stand covered in gold.Hello, ‘Gorgeous’: Grit and Glamour In San Francisco
June 20, 2014
She was not a conqueror of nations or a distributor of crowns, but a giver of alms.Female Scripture Biographies, Vol. II
Francis Augustus Cox
He was in rags, and carried the usual beggar's wallet for food or alms.Welsh Fairy Tales
William Elliott Griffis
You are not paying for it, my child; you are only contributing some alms to the Church.The Book of Khalid
Aye, aye, it's easy to steal the goose and give the giblets in alms.The Christian
Then they wished to know if alms should be given in his name?The Phantom World
- charitable donations of money or goods to the poor or needy
Word Origin and History for alms
Old English ælmesse "alms, almsgiving," from Proto-Germanic *alemosna (cf. Old Saxon alamosna, Old High German alamuosan, Old Norse ölmusa), an early borrowing of Vulgar Latin *alemosyna (source of Old Spanish almosna, Old French almosne, Italian limosina), from Church Latin eleemosyna (Tertullian, 3c.), from Greek eleemosyne "pity, mercy," in Ecclesiastical Greek "charity, alms," from eleemon "compassionate," from eleos "pity, mercy," of unknown origin, perhaps imitative of cries for alms. Spelling perversion in Vulgar Latin is perhaps by influence of alimonia.