[ on-uh-rair-ee-uhm ]
/ 藢蓲n 蓹藞r蓻蓹r i 蓹m /
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noun, plural hon路o路rar路i路ums, hon路o路rar路i路a [on-uh-rair-ee-uh]. /藢蓲n 蓹藞r蓻蓹r i 蓹/.
a payment in recognition of acts or professional services for which custom or propriety forbids a price to be set: The mayor was given a modest honorarium for delivering a speech to our club.
a fee for services rendered by a professional person.
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Origin of honorarium

1650鈥60; <Latin hon艒r膩rium fee paid on taking office, noun use of neuter of hon艒r膩riushonorary
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, 漏 Random House, Inc. 2023


What does聽honorarium mean?

An honorarium is a payment for special, professional services that don鈥檛 technically require compensation or for which payment isn鈥檛 customarily given.

An honorarium is usually given as an appreciative gesture for services outside of one鈥檚 normal job鈥攊t鈥檚 not a salary.

More generally, it can refer to a one-time fee paid to a professional for their services.

The correct plural of honorarium can be either honorariums or honoraria. Technically speaking, honoraria is the Latin-based plural form of honorarium. (Many other Latin-derived words can be pluralized in the same way, but many are rarely used, such as stadia as the plural for stadium.)

Example: I was paid a modest honorarium for the summer poetry workshop that I led.

Where does聽honorarium come from?

The first records of honorarium come from the 1600s. The word comes from the Latin hon艒r膩rium, meaning 鈥渇ee paid on taking office.鈥 In Latin, hon艒r膩rium is the noun form of the adjective hon艒r膩rius, meaning 鈥honorary.鈥

Should you ever be invited to be a speaker at a conference, you might receive an honorarium. It鈥檚 kind of like a gift for your time and expertise. Such payments are sometimes referred to as ex gratia鈥攎eaning they鈥檙e given as a gift rather than as a formal, required payment. An honorarium isn鈥檛 a freelance payment or a salary (though it is usually considered taxable income). An honorarium is also different than a stipend (a periodic payment) or a per diem (a daily allowance to cover expenses), though it could be used to cover the expenses of traveling to speak at a conference, for example. (Our advice? When you do work or offer your expertise, require payment, regardless of what the payment is called.)

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What are some other forms related to honorarium?

  • honorariums (plural)
  • honoraria (plural)

What are some words that share a root or word element with honorarium?聽

What are some words that often get used in discussing honorarium?

How is聽honorarium used in real life?

Honorariums are frequently given in the sectors of academia, government, religious institutions, and nonprofits.



Try using聽honorarium!

Which of the following words is LEAST likely to be used in reference to an honorarium?

A. gift
B. compensation
C. salary
D. fee

How to use honorarium in a sentence

British Dictionary definitions for honorarium

/ (藢蓲n蓹藞r蓻蓹r瑟蓹m) /

noun plural -iums or -ia (-瑟蓹)
a fee paid for a nominally free service

Word Origin for honorarium

C17: from Latin: something presented on being admitted to a post of honour
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition 漏 William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 漏 HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012