View synonyms for bargain


[ bahr-guhn ]


  1. an advantageous purchase, especially one acquired at less than the usual cost:

    The sale offered bargains galore.

  2. an agreement between parties settling what each shall give and take or perform and receive in a transaction.

    Synonyms: transaction, arrangement, stipulation

  3. such an agreement as affecting one of the parties:

    a losing bargain.

  4. something acquired by bargaining.
  5. Informal. an agreeable person, especially one who causes no trouble or difficulty (usually used in negative constructions):

    His boss is no bargain.

verb (used without object)

  1. to discuss the terms of a bargain; haggle; negotiate.
  2. to come to an agreement; make a bargain:

    We bargained on a three-year term.

    Synonyms: covenant, contract

verb (used with object)

  1. to arrange by bargain; negotiate:

    to bargain a new wage increase.

  2. to anticipate as likely to occur; expect (usually followed by a clause):

    I'll bargain that he's going to give those company directors plenty of trouble.

verb phrase

  1. to expect or anticipate; count or rely on:

    You can't bargain on what she'll do in this situation.

  2. to anticipate or take into account:

    The job turned out to be more than he had bargained for.


/ ˈbɑːɡɪn /


  1. an agreement or contract establishing what each party will give, receive, or perform in a transaction between them
  2. something acquired or received in such an agreement
    1. something bought or offered at a low price

      a bargain at an auction

    2. ( as modifier )

      a bargain price

  3. into the bargain or in the bargain
    in excess of what has been stipulated; besides
  4. make a bargain or strike a bargain
    to agree on terms
“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


  1. intr to negotiate the terms of an agreement, transaction, etc
  2. tr to exchange, as in a bargain
  3. to arrive at (an agreement or settlement)
“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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Derived Forms

  • ˈbargainer, noun
  • ˈbargaining, nounadjective
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Other Words From

  • bargain·a·ble adjective
  • bargain·er noun
  • outbargain verb (used with object)
  • pre·bargain verb (used with object)
  • pro·bargain·ing adjective
  • un·bargained adjective
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Word History and Origins

Origin of bargain1

First recorded in 1300–50; (for the verb) Middle English bargaynen, from Anglo-French, Old French bargai(g)ner, probably from Frankish borganjan (unrecorded); cognate with Old High German bor(a)gēn “to look after” ( German borgen “to lend”); (for the noun) Middle English bargayn, from Anglo-French, Old French bargai(g)ne, bargain, derivative of the verb; borrow
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Word History and Origins

Origin of bargain1

C14: from Old French bargaigne , from bargaignier to trade, of Germanic origin; compare Medieval Latin barcāniāre to trade, Old English borgian to borrow
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Idioms and Phrases

  1. in / into the bargain, over and above what has been stipulated; moreover; besides:

    The new housekeeper proved to be a fine cook in the bargain.

  2. strike a bargain, to make a bargain; agree to terms:

    They were unable to strike a bargain because the owner's asking price was more than the prospective buyer could afford.

More idioms and phrases containing bargain

In addition to the idiom beginning with bargain , also see drive a bargain ; into the bargain ; make the best of it (a bad bargain) ; more than one bargained for ; strike a bargain .
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Synonym Study

See agreement. See trade.
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Example Sentences

Of course, some of those bargains have proven controversial.

From Ozy

After all, just because it’s cheap doesn’t mean it’s a bargain.

From Fortune

Over the past 13 years, the glamour category has been handily beating unlovely value, the longest period in history for which what’s supposed to be the market’s bargain basement has lagged.

From Fortune

In less-expensive cities, these prices aren’t such a bargain, and in many places they’d be considered downright outrageous.

Livio’s account of this well-known story is enhanced by insights drawn from more recent scholarship, including the discovery in 1998 of a letter written during the trial suggesting that a plea bargain might have been considered.

Clearly the liberation of Gross took place in the context of what might be called a “grand bargain.”

Well, because conservatives often get more than they bargain for.

Schettino also tried to enter a plea bargain agreement, which ultimately was rejected by the Grosseto court.

And Andorra is a tax haven with bargain luxury goods shopping and great ski slopes.

We are being conditioned to believe that in exchange for a bargain, we just have no right to expect comfort in return.

The promoters went his security and put up the cash into the bargain, and he went back to the publishing house victorious.

Keen and canny, they drive a close bargain but, scrupulous and conscientious, fulfil it faithfully.

He would haggle in a bargain for a shilling, and economize in things beneath a wise man's notice or consideration.

The Midland were anxious to buy and the Ennis were willing to sell, but Parliament alone could legalise the bargain.

The pecuniary arrangements were all made, and the bargain completed, before Jane knew any thing of the matter.


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.




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