[ shawr-tij ]
/ ˈʃɔr tɪdʒ /


a deficiency in quantity: a shortage of cash.
the amount of such deficiency.

Origin of shortage

First recorded in 1865–70; short + -age

Related forms

pre·short·age, noun Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for shortage

British Dictionary definitions for shortage


/ (ˈʃɔːtɪdʒ) /


a deficiency or lack in the amount needed, expected, or due; deficit
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

Culture definitions for shortage


A condition that exists when demand exceeds supply because of a lack of equilibrium in a market. If a price is artificially low, buyers want to buy more of a good than sellers are willing to sell. (Compare surplus.)

The New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.