Definition of patronage in English:


Syllabification: pa·tron·age
Pronunciation: /ˈpatrənij, ˈpā-


  • 1The support given by a patron: the arts could no longer depend on private patronage
    More example sentences
    • It enjoyed no government funding and no guarantee of private patronage.
    • Exploration, however, depended upon private patronage despite theorists imploring that maritime expansionism should be state-sponsored.
    • As an artist I rely upon the support and patronage of a public audience; I rely upon my words and images being seen as I created them.
    sponsorship, backing, funding, financing, promotion, assistance, support
  • 2The power to control appointments to office or the right to privileges: recruits are selected on merit, not through political patronage
    More example sentences
    • Imperial authorities also used their powers of patronage or appointment, the mechanisms of taxation, and the provision of public works, to the same end.
    • In the past the civil service was used as an employment office for political patronage.
    • Over-zealous political patronage, greed and power are behind the latest saga, no doubt.
    power of appointment, favoritism, nepotism, preferential treatment, cronyism, pork-barreling
  • 3A patronizing or condescending manner: a twang of self-satisfaction—even patronage—about him
    More example sentences
    • Without a hint of patronage or condescension, he shows how both characters are victims of circumstance.
  • 4The regular business given to a store, restaurant, or public service by a person or group: the direct train link was ending because of poor patronage
    More example sentences
    • I need to prepare for a new chapter in my coffee shop patronage.
    • Immigration has enriched the range of restaurants, and restaurant patronage is rising.
    • At the time we were aboard, there was a small but well selected book collection, which included children's books, that attracted considerable patronage.
    custom, trade, business
  • 5(In ancient Rome) the rights and duties or the position of a patron.


late Middle English: from Old French, from patron 'protector, advocate' (see patron).

More definitions of patronage

Definition of patronage in:

Get more from Oxford Dictionaries

Subscribe to remove adverts and access premium resources

Word of the day skosh
Pronunciation: skəʊʃ
a small amount; a little