verb (past and past participle spent /spɛnt/)[with object]
- 1Give (money) to pay for goods, services, or so as to benefit someone or something: the firm has spent £100,000 on hardwareMore example sentences
pay out, lay out, expend, disburse; squander, go through, run through, waste, fritter away; lavishAustralian/New Zealand • informal knock down• archaic springNorth American • informal pony up
- We spent too much money on people that hate us and loathe us and want us out of their country.
- By now there should be nobody who doesn't agree that how much money we spend per pupil makes a difference.
- 1.1Use or give out the whole of; exhaust: she couldn’t buy any more because she had already spent her money the initial surge of interest had spent itselfMore example sentences
- She put her hands on her hips and watched as the can spent itself.
- The lightning spent itself and the coach fell to the ground unconscious.
- The last drops of the rainfall spattered heavily against the cobblestones as the storm spent itself and shook itself off.
- 2Pass (time) in a specified way or in a particular place: she spent a lot of time travellingMore example sentences
- She spent a sleepless night passing along the police line searching out scraps of news.
- A driver without a resident's pass wanting to spend three hours in Piccadilly car park must find £6 in coins.
- Last week the town council passed a motion to spend a day picking up litter around the town.
noun• informal Back to top
- An amount of money paid out: the average spend at the cafe is £10 a headMore example sentences
- This still amounts to an aggregate spend of several millions.
- The average spend per child is continuing to rise year-on-year.
- Microsoft group marketing manager Nick McGrath likens the spend to the amount used in launching a new car.
spend a penny
- British • informal Used euphemistically to refer to a need to urinate: you can’t get to sleep when you want to spend a penny[with reference to the coin-operated locks of public toilets]More example sentences
- For years drinkers at The Sally Pussey Inn in Swindon Road have been spending a penny in the avocado-coloured urinals blissfully unaware that they may be worth quite a few pounds.
- At the Lindale Post Office and General Store, villagers have been spending pounds on the National Lottery to ensure people can go on spending a penny in the public toilet.
- Supt Lacy said those caught spending a penny in public could be hit with maximum fines of £500.
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- This means food vouchers spendable only at certain supermarkets, and dispersal to one ‘no choice’ offer of accommodation, often away from existing communities, lawyers and even families.
- ‘It's still spendable, so it's not exactly scrap,’ Astor pointed out.
- But having no spendable currency hampered their happiness.
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- The biggest spenders in monetary terms are Britain at €41 bn, France at €34 bn and Germany at €24 bn.
- By far the biggest spenders are the Norwegians and the Finns, who spent almost €50 and €38 per person on haircare products in 2002.
- The highest spenders are people aged between 45 and 64, this group spending on average €314 each on the net before Christmas.
Old English spendan, from Latin expendere 'pay out'; partly also a shortening of obsolete dispend, from Latin dispendere 'pay out'.