contingent

The adjective contingent can be used to describe when something can occur only when something else does first. Making money is contingent on finding a good-paying job.

When something is contingent it means that the possibility of an event or situation depends on another happening or being true first. For example, sometimes people want to buy a new house but they make the purchase of the house they want to buy contingent upon someone else buying their old house first. That way they don't end up owning two houses!

PRIMARY MEANINGS OF: contingent

1
adj
determined by conditions or circumstances that follow
2
n
a gathering of persons representative of some larger group
3
n
a temporary military unit
FULL DEFINITIONS OF: contingent
1

adj determined by conditions or circumstances that follow

“arms sales contingent on the approval of congress”
Synonyms:
contingent on, contingent upon, dependant on, dependant upon, dependent on, dependent upon, depending on
conditional
imposing or depending on or containing a condition

adj uncertain because of uncontrollable circumstances

“"the results of confession were not contingent, they were certain"- George Eliot”
Synonyms
uncertain
not certain to occur; not inevitable

adj possible but not certain to occur

“they had to plan for contingent expenses”
Synonyms
possible
capable of happening or existing
2

n a gathering of persons representative of some larger group

“each nation sent a contingent of athletes to the Olympics”
Type of:
assemblage, gathering
a group of persons together in one place
3

n a temporary military unit

“the peacekeeping force includes one British contingent
Synonyms:
detail
Type of:
force, military force, military group, military unit
a unit that is part of some military service
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