money earned; wages; profits.

Origin of earnings

before 1050; Middle English erning, Old English earning, earnung merit, pay. See earn1, -ing1, -s3
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for earnings

Contemporary Examples of earnings

Historical Examples of earnings

  • I was to give half my earnings and to do for Eileen exactly as I did for you.

    Her Father's Daughter

    Gene Stratton-Porter

  • The gross earnings have largely increased during the years 1891 and 1892.

    The Railroad Question

    William Larrabee

  • Where gross annual earnings, per mile, shall be $4,000 or more.

    The Railroad Question

    William Larrabee

  • He now also fell upon the children's earnings with greater avidity than ever.

  • But all the same, mamma has a weakness for him, and lets him take all my earnings.


    Emile Zola

British Dictionary definitions for earnings


pl n

money or other payment earned
the profits of an enterprise
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 earnings

amount of money one makes (from labor or investment), 1732, from plural of verbal noun earning (Old English earnung "fact of deserving; what one deserves;" see earn).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper