The noun award refers to a prize of some kind that indicates you’ve done well and achieved an honor. The verb form of award describes giving out one of these honors. So your teacher may award you the Math Genius award.

Award can be something given out by a court of law. For example, a judge might give you a monetary award when you win a lawsuit. Award can also be something you get when you're the big winner. The state lottery commission might award you $35 when you hit the lottery. Award comes from the Old English word weardian, meaning “guard” — which is exactly what you should do with that $35.

Definitions of award

v give, especially as an honor or reward

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present someone with a certificate
bestow, confer
confer a miter on (a bishop)
confer prosperity or happiness on
confer an academic degree upon
Type of:
allocate, apportion
distribute according to a plan or set apart for a special purpose

v give as judged due or on the basis of merit

“the referee awarded a free kick to the team”
“the jury awarded a million dollars to the plaintiff”
pension, pension off
grant a pension to
Type of:
cause to have, in the abstract sense or physical sense

n something given for victory or superiority in a contest or competition or for winning a lottery

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financial aid provided to a student on the basis of academic merit
money granted (by a university or foundation or other agency) for advanced study or research
an award (as for meritorious service) given without claim or obligation
door prize
tickets are passed out at the entrance to a dance or party or other social function and a prize is awarded to the holder of the winning ticket
any outstanding award
prize money
any money given as a prize
a prize, bonus, or award given as an inducement to purchase products, enter competitions initiated by business interests, etc.
Type of:
something acquired without compensation

n a tangible symbol signifying approval or distinction

“an award for bravery”
accolade, honor, honour, laurels
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prize, trophy
something given as a token of victory
(Judaism) the honor of being called up to the reading desk in the synagogue to read from the Torah
academic degree, degree
an award conferred by a college or university signifying that the recipient has satisfactorily completed a course of study
crown, pennant
the award given to the champion
cachet, seal, seal of approval
an indication of approved or superior status
citation, commendation
an official award (as for bravery or service) usually given as formal public statement
honorable mention, mention
an official recognition of merit
letter, varsity letter
an award earned by participation in a school sport
decoration, laurel wreath, medal, medallion, palm, ribbon
an award for winning a championship or commemorating some other event
an award for success in war or hunting
an annual award by the Academy of Television Arts and Sciences for outstanding achievements in television
Nobel prize
an annual award for outstanding contributions to chemistry or physics or physiology and medicine or literature or economics or peace
Academy Award, Oscar
an annual award by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences for achievements in motion picture production and performance
Prix de Rome
an annual prize awarded by the French government in a competition of painters and artists and sculptors and musicians and architects; the winner in each category receives support for a period of study in Rome
Prix Goncourt
an award given annually for contributions to French literature
apple of discord
(classical mythology) a golden apple thrown into a banquet of the gods by Eris (goddess of discord--who had not been invited); the apple had `for the fairest' written on it and Hera and Athena and Aphrodite all claimed it; when Paris (prince of Troy) awarded it to Aphrodite it began a chain of events that led to the Trojan War
booby prize
a prize given to one who finishes last in a contest
bronze medal
a trophy made of bronze (or having the appearance of bronze) that is usually awarded for winning third place in a competition
cup, loving cup
a large metal vessel with two handles that is awarded as a trophy to the winner of a competition
gold medal
a trophy made of gold (or having the appearance of gold) that is usually awarded for winning first place in a competition
silver, silver medal
a trophy made of silver (or having the appearance of silver) that is usually awarded for winning second place in a competition
associate, associate degree
a degree granted by a two-year college on successful completion of the undergraduates course of studies
baccalaureate, bachelor's degree
an academic degree conferred on someone who has successfully completed undergraduate studies
honours, honours degree
a university degree with honors
master's degree
an academic degree higher than a bachelor's degree but lower than a doctor's degree
doctor's degree, doctorate
one of the highest earned academic degrees conferred by a university
law degree
degree conferred on someone who successfully completes law school
honorary degree, honoris causa
a degree conferred to honor the recipient
Congressional Medal of Honor, Medal of Honor
the highest U.S. military decoration awarded for bravery and valor in action `above and beyond the call of duty'
Distinguished Service Medal
a United States military decoration for meritorious service in wartime duty of great responsibility
Distinguished Service Cross
a United States Army decoration for extraordinary heroism against an armed enemy
Navy Cross
a United States Navy decoration for extraordinary heroism against an armed enemy
Distinguished Flying Cross
a United States Air Force decoration for heroism while participating in an aerial flight
Air Medal
a United States Air Force decoration for meritorious achievement while participating in an aerial flight
Silver Star, Silver Star Medal
a United States military decoration for gallantry in action
Bronze Star, Bronze Star Medal
a United States military decoration awarded for meritorious service (except in aerial flight)
Order of the Purple Heart, Purple Heart
a United States military decoration awarded to any member of the armed forces who is wounded in action
Oak Leaf Cluster
a United States military decoration consisting of bronze or silver oak leaves and acorns awarded to anyone who has won a given medal before
Victoria Cross
a British military decoration for gallantry
Distinguished Conduct Medal
a British military decoration for distinguished conduct in the field
Distinguished Service Order
a British military decoration for special service in action
Croix de Guerre
a French military decoration for gallantry
Medaille Militaire
a French military decoration
Type of:
an arbitrary sign (written or printed) that has acquired a conventional significance

n a grant made by a law court

(Roman law) a formal award by a magistrate of a thing or person to another person (as the award of a debtor to his creditor); a surrender to a master
Type of:
grant, subsidisation, subsidization
the act of providing a subsidy

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