at a discount,
    1. Commerce.below par.
    2. below the usual list price.
    3. in low esteem or regard: His excuses were taken at a discount by all who knew him.
    4. not in demand; unwanted: Such ancient superstitions are at a discount in a civilized society.

Origin of discount

1615–25; dis-1 + count1, modeled on French décompter, Old French desconter < Medieval Latin discomputāre
Related formsdis·count·a·ble, adjectivenon·dis·count, adjectivenon·dis·count·a·ble, adjectivenon·dis·count·ed, adjectiveo·ver·dis·count, verb (used with object)pre·dis·count, noun, verb (used with object)pre·dis·count·a·ble, adjectivesu·per·dis·count, nounun·dis·count·a·ble, adjectiveun·dis·count·ed, adjective Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for discount

Contemporary Examples of discount

Historical Examples of discount

British Dictionary definitions for discount


verb (dɪsˈkaʊnt, ˈdɪskaʊnt) (mainly tr)

to leave out of account as being unreliable, prejudiced, or irrelevant
to anticipate and make allowance for, often so as to diminish the effect of
  1. to deduct (a specified amount or percentage) from the usual price, cost, etc
  2. to reduce (the regular price, cost, etc) by a stated percentage or amount
to sell or offer for sale at a reduced price
to buy or sell (a bill of exchange, etc) before maturity, with a deduction for interest determined by the time to maturity and also by risk
(also intr) to loan money on (a negotiable instrument that is not immediately payable) with a deduction for interest determined by risk and time to maturity

noun (ˈdɪskaʊnt)

a deduction from the full amount of a price or debt, as in return for prompt payment or to a special group of customersSee also cash discount, trade discount
Also called: discount rate
  1. the amount of interest deducted in the purchase or sale of or the loan of money on unmatured negotiable instruments
  2. the rate of interest deducted
  1. (in the issue of shares) a percentage deducted from the par value to give a reduced amount payable by subscribers
  2. the amount by which the par value of something, esp shares, exceeds its market valueCompare premium (def. 3)
the act or an instance of discounting a negotiable instrument
at a discount
  1. below the regular price
  2. (of share values) below par
  3. held in low regard; not sought after or valued
(modifier) offering or selling at reduced pricesa discount shop
Derived Formsdiscountable, adjectivediscounter, noun
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 discount

1620s, "abatement," alteration of 16c. French descompte, from Medieval Latin discomputus (source of Italian disconto), from discomputare (see discount (v.)). Meaning "deduction for early payment" is from 1680s; meaning "reduction in the price of goods" attested by 1837.


1620s, "reckon as an abatement or deduction," from Old French desconter (13c., Modern French décompter), from Medieval Latin discomputare, from dis- (see dis-) + computare "to count" (see count (v.)). Hence, "to abate, deduct" (1650s), and figurative sense "to leave out of account, disregard" (1702). Related: Discounted; discounting.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

Idioms and Phrases with discount


see at a discount.

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