• synonyms


[pey-truh-nahyz, pa‐]
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verb (used with object), pa·tron·ized, pa·tron·iz·ing.
  1. to give (a store, restaurant, hotel, etc.) one's regular patronage; trade with.
  2. to behave in an offensively condescending manner toward: a professor who patronizes his students.
  3. to act as a patron toward (an artist, institution, etc.); support.
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Also especially British, pa·tron·ise.

Origin of patronize

First recorded in 1580–90; patron + -ize
Related formspa·tron·iz·a·ble, adjectivepa·tron·i·za·tion, nounpa·tron·iz·er, nounre·pa·tron·ize, verb (used with object), re·pa·tron·ized, re·pa·tron·iz·ing.trans·pa·tron·ize, verb (used with object), trans·pa·tron·ized, trans·pa·tron·iz·ing.un·pa·tron·iz·a·ble, adjectivewell-pa·tron·ized, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words for patronization

airs, civility, condescendence, deference, haughtiness, loftiness, patronage, superciliousness, toleration, advocacy, aegis, aid, assistance, auspice, auspices, backing, benefaction, championship, encouragement, financing

Examples from the Web for patronization

Historical Examples of patronization

  • The note of patronization, the tone of superior wisdom, stung the scientist.

    The Tyranny of the Dark

    Hamlin Garland

British Dictionary definitions for patronization



  1. to behave or treat in a condescending way
  2. (tr) to act as a patron or patroness by sponsoring or bringing trade to
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Derived Formspatronizer or patroniser, 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 patronization



1580s, "to act as a patron towards," from patron + -ize, or from Old French patroniser. Meaning "treat in a condescending way" is first attested 1797; sense of "give regular business to" is from 1801. Related: Patronized; patronizing.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper