amount

[uh-mount]

noun

the sum total of two or more quantities or sums; aggregate.
the sum of the principal and interest of a loan.
quantity; measure: a great amount of resistance.
the full effect, value, or significance.

verb (used without object)


Origin of amount

1250–1300; Middle English amounten, amunten < Anglo-French amo(u)nter, amunter, Old French amonter literally, to go up, ascend, probably a- a-5 + monter (see mount1); E noun use of v. from early 18th cent.
Can be confusedamount number (see usage note at the current entry)

Usage note

The traditional distinction between amount and number is that amount is used with mass or uncountable nouns ( the amount of paperwork; the amount of energy ) and number with countable nouns ( a number of songs; a number of days ). Although objected to, the use of amount instead of number with countable nouns occurs in both speech and writing, especially when the noun can be considered as a unit or group ( the amount of people present; the amount of weapons ) or when it refers to money ( the amount of dollars paid; the amount of pennies in the till ).
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019


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British Dictionary definitions for amounts

amount

noun

extent; quantity; supply
the total of two or more quantities; sum
the full value, effect, or significance of something
a principal sum plus the interest on it, as in a loan

verb

(intr usually foll by to) to be equal or add up in effect, meaning, or quantity

Word Origin for amount

C13: from Old French amonter to go up, from amont upwards, from a to + mont mountain (from Latin mōns)

usage

The use of a plural noun after amount of ( an amount of bananas; the amount of refugees) should be avoided: a quantity of bananas; the number of refugees
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

Word Origin and History for amounts

amount

v.

late 13c., "to go up, rise, mount (a horse)," from Old French amonter, from a mont "upward," literally "to the mountain," from Latin ad- "to" (see ad-) + montem (nominative mons) "mountain" (see mount (n.)). Meaning "to rise in number or quality (so as to reach)" is from c.1300. Related: Amounted; amounting.

amount

n.

1710, from amount (v.).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper