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See more synonyms for recompense on Thesaurus.com
verb (used with object), rec·om·pensed, rec·om·pens·ing.
  1. to repay; remunerate; reward, as for service, aid, etc.
  2. to pay or give compensation for; make restitution or requital for (damage, injury, or the like).
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verb (used without object), rec·om·pensed, rec·om·pens·ing.
  1. to make compensation for something; repay someone: no attempt to recompense for our trouble.
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  1. compensation, as for an injury, wrong, etc.: to make recompense for the loss one's carelessness has caused.
  2. a repayment or requital, as for favors, gifts, etc.
  3. a remuneration or reward, as for services, aid, or the like.
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Origin of recompense

1375–1425; (v.) late Middle English < Middle French recompenser < Late Latin recompēnsāre, equivalent to Latin re- re- + compēnsāre (see compensate); (noun) late Middle English < Middle French, derivative of recompenser
Related formsrec·om·pen·sa·ble, adjectiverec·om·pens·er, nounun·der·rec·om·pense, verb (used with object), un·der·rec·om·pensed, un·der·rec·om·pens·ing, nounun·rec·om·pens·a·ble, adjectiveun·rec·om·pensed, adjective


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Synonym study

4–6. See reward.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words

due, gratuitous, honorary, uncompensated, unremunerated, voluntary, volunteer, contributed, unindemnified, unrewarded

Examples from the Web for unrecompensed

Historical Examples

  • On what did that sentiment, unsolicited and unrecompensed, rest?

    The Golden Bowl

    Henry James

  • Her passion of gratitude could not let his service go all unrecompensed.

    Spanish Highways and Byways

    Katharine Lee Bates

British Dictionary definitions for unrecompensed


  1. (tr) to pay or reward for service, work, etc
  2. (tr) to compensate for loss, injury, etc
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  1. compensation for loss, injury, etcto make recompense
  2. reward, remuneration, or repayment
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Derived Formsrecompensable, adjectiverecompenser, noun

Word Origin

C15: from Old French recompenser, from Latin re- + compensāre to balance in weighing; see compensate
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 unrecompensed



c.1400, "to redress," from Middle French recompenser (14c.) and directly from Medieval Latin recompensare "to reward, remunerate," from Latin re- "again" (see re-) + compensare "balance out," literally "weigh together" (see compensate). From early 15c. as "to compensate." Related: Recompensed; recompensing.

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early 15c., from Middle French recompense (13c.), related to recompenser "make good, recompense" from Late Latin recompensare (see recompense (v.)).

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper