1. the sum or amount of money or its equivalent for which anything is bought, sold, or offered for sale.
  2. a sum offered for the capture of a person alive or dead: The authorities put a price on his head.
  3. the sum of money, or other consideration, for which a person’s support, consent, etc., may be obtained, especially in cases involving sacrifice of integrity: They claimed that every politician has a price.
  4. that which must be given, done, or undergone in order to obtain a thing: He gained the victory, but at a heavy price.
  5. odds(def 2).
  6. Archaic. value or worth.
  7. Archaic. great value or worth (usually preceded by of).

verb (used with object), priced, pricĀ·ing.

  1. to fix the price of.
  2. to ask or determine the price of: We spent the day pricing furniture at various stores.
  1. at any price, at any cost, no matter how great: Their orders were to capture the town at any price.
  2. beyond/without price, of incalculable value; priceless: The crown jewels are beyond price.


  1. the sum in money or goods for which anything is or may be bought or sold
  2. the cost at which anything is obtained
  3. the cost of bribing a person
  4. a sum of money offered or given as a reward for a capture or killing
  5. value or worth, esp high worth
  6. gambling another word for odds
  7. at any price whatever the price or cost
  8. at a price at a high price
  9. beyond price or without price invaluable or priceless
  10. the price of someone Irish what someone deserves, esp a fitting punishmentit’s just the price of him
  11. what price something? what are the chances of something happening now?

verb (tr)

  1. to fix or establish the price of
  2. to ascertain or discover the price of
  3. price out of the market to charge so highly for as to prevent the sale, hire, etc, of

c.1200, pris “value, worth; praise,” later “cost, recompense, prize” (mid-13c.), from Old French pris “price, value, wages, reward,” also “honor, fame, praise, prize” (Modern French prix), from Late Latin precium, from Latin pretium “reward, prize, value, worth,” from PIE *pret-yo-, from root *per- (5) “to traffic in, to sell” (cf. Sanskrit aprata “without recompense, gratuitously;” Greek porne “prostitute,” originally “bought, purchased,” pernanai “to sell;” Lithuanian perku “I buy”).

Praise, price, and prize began to diverge in Old French, with praise emerging in Middle English by early 14c. and prize being evident by late 1500s with the rise of the -z- spelling. Having shed the extra Old French and Middle English senses, the word now again has the base sense of the Latin original. To set (or put) a price on someone, “offer a reward for capture” is from 1766.


“to set the price of,” late 14c., from price (n.) or from Old French prisier, variant of preisier “to value, estimate; to praise.” Related: Priced; pricing.

In addition to the idioms beginning with price

  • price is right, the
  • price on one’s head
  • price out of the market

also see:

  • at all costs (at any price)
  • cheap at twice the price
  • every man has his price

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