verb (used with object), pur·chased, pur·chas·ing.

verb (used without object), pur·chased, pur·chas·ing.

to buy something.


Origin of purchase

before 1150; (v.) Middle English purchasen < Anglo-French purchacer to seek to obtain, procure (Old French pourchacier), equivalent to pur- (< Latin prō pro1) + chacer to chase1; (noun) Middle English < Anglo-French purchas (Old French porchas), derivative of the v.
Related formspur·chas·er, nounmis·pur·chase, verb (used with object), mis·pur·chased, mis·pur·chas·ing.non·pur·chase, nounnon·pur·chas·er, nouno·ver·pur·chase, verb (used with object), o·ver·pur·chased, o·ver·pur·chas·ing.pre·pur·chase, noun, verb (used with object), pre·pur·chased, pre·pur·chas·ing.pre·pur·chas·er, nounqua·si-pur·chased, adjectiveun·pur·chased, adjective

Synonyms for purchase

Synonym study

1. See buy.

Antonyms for purchase

1. sell.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Related Words for purchaser

customer, patron, shopper, client, consumer

Examples from the Web for purchaser

Contemporary Examples of purchaser

  • The government will be the purchaser of GM in the 363 Sale, so they are naturally involved, day-to-day.

    The Daily Beast logo
    GM: We're on a Short Leash

    Paul A. Eisenstein

    June 29, 2009

Historical Examples of purchaser

British Dictionary definitions for purchaser


verb (tr)

to obtain (goods, etc) by payment
to obtain by effort, sacrifice, etcto purchase one's freedom
to draw, haul, or lift (a load) with the aid of mechanical apparatus
to acquire (an estate) other than by inheritance


something that is purchased, esp an article bought with money
the act of buying
acquisition of an estate by any lawful means other than inheritance
a rough measure of the mechanical advantage achieved by a lever
a firm foothold, grasp, etc, as for climbing or levering something
a means of achieving some influence, advantage, etc
Derived Formspurchaser, noun

Word Origin for purchase

C13: from Old French porchacier to strive to obtain, from por- for + chacier to chase 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

Word Origin and History for purchaser

c.1300, from Anglo-French, Old French porchaceor, agent noun from porchacier (see purchase (v.)).



c.1300, "acquire, obtain; get, receive; procure, provide," also "accomplish or bring about; instigate; cause, contrive, plot; recruit, hire," from Anglo-French purchaser "go after," Old French porchacier "search for, procure; purchase; aim at, strive for, pursue eagerly" (11c., Modern French pourchasser), from pur- "forth" (possibly used here as an intensive prefix; see pur-) + Old French chacier "run after, to hunt, chase" (see chase (v.)).

Originally to obtain or receive as due in any way, including through merit or suffering; specific sense of "acquire for money, pay money for, buy" is from mid-14c., though the word continued to be used for "to get by conquest in war, obtain as booty" up to 17c. Related: Purchased; purchasing.



c.1300, purchas, "acquisition, gain;" also, "something acquired or received, a possession; property, goods;" especially "booty, spoil; goods gained by pillage or robbery" (to make purchase was "to seize by robbery"). Also "mercenary soldier, one who fights for booty." From Anglo-French purchace, Old French porchaz "acquisition, gain, profit; seizing, plunder; search pursuit, effort," from Anglo-French purchaser, Old French porchacier (see purchase (v.)).

From early 14c. as "endeavor, effort, exertion; instigation, contrivance;" late 14c. as "act of acquiring, procurement." Meaning "that which is bought" is from 1580s. The sense of "hold or position for advantageously applying power" (1711) is extended from the nautical verb meaning "to haul or draw (especially by mechanical power)," often used in reference to hauling up anchors, attested from 1560s. Wif of purchase (early 14c.) was a term for "concubine."

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper