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tantamount

[tan-tuh-mount]
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adjective
  1. equivalent, as in value, force, effect, or signification: His angry speech was tantamount to a declaration of war.
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Origin of tantamount

1635–45; adj. use of obsolete noun: that which amounts to as much, itself noun use of obsolete v.: to amount to as much < Anglo-French tant amunter or Italian tanto montare to amount to as much. See tanto, amount
Can be confusedparamount tantamount

Synonyms

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See equal.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for tantamount

Contemporary Examples

Historical Examples

  • He did not answer her, for he could not speak at all; but his silence was tantamount to an admission.

    Cleo The Magnificent

    Louis Zangwill

  • He made a furious gesture, which was tantamount to sending her to the devil.

    His Masterpiece

    Emile Zola

  • It would be tantamount to acknowledging she was for sale but that he hadn't the price.

    The Paliser case

    Edgar Saltus

  • The average Republican regarded this message as tantamount to a declaration of war.

    Union and Democracy

    Allen Johnson

  • This would not do, said the colonel; it was tantamount to insubordination.

    Marion's Faith.

    Charles King


British Dictionary definitions for tantamount

tantamount

adjective
  1. (postpositive foll by to) as good (as); equivalent in effect (to)his statement was tantamount to an admission of guilt
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Word Origin

C17: basically from Anglo-French tant amunter to amount to as much, from tant so much + amunter to amount
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 tantamount

adj.

1640s, from verbal phrase tant amount "be equivalent" (1620s), from Anglo-French tant amunter "amount to as much" (late 13c.), from Old French tant "as much" (from Latin tantus, from tam "so") + amonter "amount to, go up" (see amount).

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper