pocket money


money for small, current expenses.

Origin of pocket money

First recorded in 1625–35
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for pocket money

Historical Examples of pocket money

  • The senator's son did so, and paid for it out of his pocket-money.

  • My pocket-money would not suffice for the purchase of it, so I secretly copied it.

    Life of Beethoven

    Anton Schindler

  • I may add that the reader received free board and lodging and ten florins a month pocket-money for his services.

  • He insisted upon allowing me a thousand a year, merely as pocket-money, while still defraying all large expenses for me, himself.

    The Following of the Star

    Florence L. Barclay

  • The other girls envied her her privileges and her pocket-money, but they did not understand.

British Dictionary definitions for pocket money

pocket money


British a small weekly sum of money given to children by parents as an allowance
money for day-to-day spending, incidental expenses, etc
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

Idioms and Phrases with pocket money

pocket money

Also, spending money. Cash for incidental or minor expenses, as in They don't believe in giving the children pocket money without asking them to do chores, or Can I borrow a dollar? I'm out of all my spending money. The first term, dating from the early 1600s, alludes to keeping small sums in one's pocket; the second alludes to money that may be spent (as opposed to saved) and dates from the late 1500s.

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