[ lohn ]
See synonyms for: loanloaned on

  1. the act of lending; a grant of the temporary use of something: the loan of a book.

  2. something lent or furnished on condition of being returned, especially a sum of money lent at interest: a $1000 loan at 10 percent interest.

verb (used with object)
  1. to make a loan of; lend: Will you loan me your umbrella?

  2. to lend (money) at interest.

verb (used without object)
  1. to make a loan or loans; lend.

Idioms about loan

  1. on loan,

    • borrowed for temporary use: How many books can I have on loan from the library at one time?

    • temporarily provided or released by one's regular employer, superior, or owner for use by another: Our best actor is on loan to another movie studio for two films.

Origin of loan

First recorded in 1150–1200; Middle English noun lon(e), lan(e), Old English lān, from Old Norse lān; replacing its cognate, Old English lǣn “loan, grant,” cognate with Dutch leen “loan,” German Leh(e)n “fief”; cf. lend

usage note For loan

Sometimes mistakenly identified as an Americanism, loan1 as a verb meaning “to lend” has been used in English for nearly 800 years: Nearby villages loaned clothing and other supplies to the flood-ravaged town. The occasional objections to loan as a verb referring to things other than money, are comparatively recent. Loan is standard in all contexts but is perhaps most common in financial ones: The government has loaned money to farmers to purchase seed.

Other words from loan

  • un·loaned, adjective

Words that may be confused with loan

Words Nearby loan

Other definitions for loan (2 of 2)

[ lohn ]

  1. a country lane; secondary road.

  2. an uncultivated plot of farmland, usually used for milking cows.

Origin of loan

First recorded in 1350–1400; Middle English lane, lone, Old English lane, lane1
  • Also loan·ing [loh-ning]. /ˈloʊ nɪŋ/.

Other words from loan

  • un·loan·ing, adjective Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023

How to use loan in a sentence

British Dictionary definitions for loan (1 of 2)


/ (ləʊn) /

  1. the act of lending: the loan of a car

    • property lent, esp money lent at interest for a period of time

    • (as modifier): loan holder

  1. the adoption by speakers of one language of a form current in another language

  2. short for loan word

  3. on loan

    • lent out; borrowed

    • (esp of personnel) transferred from a regular post to a temporary one elsewhere

  1. to lend (something, esp money)

Origin of loan

C13 loon, lan, from Old Norse lān; related to Old English lǣn loan; compare German Lehen fief, Lohn wages

Derived forms of loan

  • loanable, adjective
  • loaner, noun

British Dictionary definitions for loan (2 of 2)


loaning (ˈləʊnɪŋ)

/ (ləʊn) /

nounScot and Northern English dialect
  1. a lane

  2. a place where cows are milked

Origin of loan

Old English lone, variant of lane 1

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