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  1. simple past tense and past participle of spend.
  2. used up; consumed.
  3. tired; worn-out; exhausted.
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Related formswell-spent, adjective


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3. weary, drained, fagged.


verb (used with object), spent, spend·ing.
  1. to pay out, disburse, or expend; dispose of (money, wealth, resources, etc.): resisting the temptation to spend one's money.
  2. to employ (labor, thought, words, time, etc.), as on some object or in some proceeding: Don't spend much time on it.
  3. to pass (time) in a particular manner, place, etc.: We spent a few days in Baltimore.
  4. to use up, consume, or exhaust: The storm had spent its fury.
  5. to give (one's blood, life, etc.) for some cause.
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verb (used without object), spent, spend·ing.
  1. to spend money, energy, time, etc.
  2. Obsolete. to be consumed or exhausted.
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Origin of spend

1125–75; Middle English spenden, continuing Old English -spendan (in āspendan, forspendan to spend entirely or utterly) < West Germanic < Latin expendere to pay out, expend; compare German spenden
Related formsan·ti·spend·ing, adjectiveun·der·spend, verb, un·der·spent, un·der·spend·ing.un·spend·ing, adjective


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1. Spend, disburse, expend, squander refer to paying out money. Spend is the general word: We spend more for living expenses now. Disburse implies expending from a specific source or sum to meet specific obligations, or paying in definite allotments: The treasurer has authority to disburse funds. Expend is more formal, and implies spending for some definite and (usually) sensible or worthy object: to expend most of one's salary on necessities. Squander suggests lavish, wasteful, or foolish expenditure: to squander a legacy. 2. use, apply, devote.


1. earn, keep.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words


Examples from the Web for spent

Contemporary Examples

Historical Examples

  • He spent such an evening there at the end of their first month in New York.

    The Spenders

    Harry Leon Wilson

  • In your service I have spent many toilsome days and sleepless nights.


    Lydia Maria Child

  • Here he cooked and ate his meals, and here he spent his solitary evenings.

    Brave and Bold

    Horatio Alger

  • The honeymoon will be spent at the town-house of the groom, in York Terrace.

    The Spenders

    Harry Leon Wilson

  • Haven't we spent all our surplus in keeping you up for a good marriage?

    The Spenders

    Harry Leon Wilson

British Dictionary definitions for spent


  1. the past tense and past participle of spend
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  1. used up or exhausted; consumed
  2. (of a fish) exhausted by spawning
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verb spends, spending or spent
  1. to pay out (money, wealth, etc)
  2. (tr) to concentrate (time, effort, thought, etc) upon an object, activity, etc
  3. (tr) to pass (time) in a specific way, activity, place, etc
  4. (tr) to use up completelythe hurricane spent its force
  5. (tr) to give up (one's blood, life, etc) in a cause
  6. (intr) obsolete to be used up or exhausted
  7. spend a penny British informal to urinate
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  1. an amount of money spent, esp regularly, or allocated to be spent
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See also spends
Derived Formsspendable, adjective

Word Origin

Old English spendan, from Latin expendere; influenced also by Old French despendre to spend, from Latin dispendere; see expend, dispense
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 spent



"to pay out or away" (money or wealth), Old English -spendan (in forspendan "use up"), from Latin expendere "to weigh out money, pay down" (see expend). A general Germanic borrowing (cf. Old High German spendon, German and Middle Dutch spenden, Old Norse spenna). In reference to labor, thoughts, time, etc., attested from c.1300.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

Idioms and Phrases with spent


see pocket (spending) money.

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