The cost of something is how much money you need to spend on it. The high cost of a fancy coffee drink might surprise you.

A new car costs thousands of dollars, while in some places penny candy still only costs a penny per piece. Cost also means "cause a loss," as when a bad fumble costs your favorite football team the game, or your brother's cheating on a test costs him the respect of his favorite teacher. The Old French cost meant "outlay, expenditure, hardship, or trouble," from the Latin root constare, "to stand at or to cost."

Definitions of cost
  1. verb
    be priced at
    “These shoes cost $100”
    synonyms: be
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    knock back, put back, set back
    cost a certain amount
    type of:
    have the quality of being; (copula, used with an adjective or a predicate noun)
  2. noun
    the total spent for goods or services including money and time and labor
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    disbursal, disbursement, expense
    amounts paid for goods and services that may be currently tax deductible (as opposed to capital expenditures)
    capital expenditure
    the cost of long-term improvements
    a sum of money paid or a claim discharged
    ransom, ransom money
    money demanded for the return of a captured person
    cost overrun
    excess of cost over budget
    cost of living
    average cost of basic necessities of life (as food and shelter and clothing)
    borrowing cost
    the cost of borrowing something
    distribution cost
    any cost incurred by a producer or wholesaler or retailer or distributor (as for advertising and shipping etc)
    handling charge, handling cost
    the cost of handling (especially the cost of packaging and mailing an order)
    marketing cost
    the cost of marketing (e.g., the cost of transferring title and moving goods to the customer)
    production cost
    combined costs of raw material and labor incurred in producing goods
    replacement cost
    current cost of replacing a fixed asset with a new one of equal effectiveness
    physical value, reproduction cost
    cost of reproducing physical property minus various allowances (especially depreciation)
    unit cost
    calculated cost for a given unit of a product
    damage, price, terms
    the amount of money needed to purchase something
    cost of bribing someone
    opportunity cost
    cost in terms of foregoing alternatives
    the cost of carrying or transporting
    the price charged for some article or service
    payment to the holder of a patent or copyright or resource for the right to use their property
    bonus, incentive
    an additional payment (or other remuneration) to employees as a means of increasing output
    business expense, trade expense
    ordinary and necessary expenses incurred in a taxpayer's business or trade
    interest expense
    interest paid on loans
    lobbying expense
    expenses incurred in promoting or evaluating legislation
    medical expense
    amount spent for diagnosis or treatment or prevention of medical problems
    non-cash expense
    an expense (such as depreciation) that is not paid for in cash
    moving expense
    the cost of moving your residence from one location to another
    budget items, operating cost, operating expense, overhead
    the expense of maintaining property (e.g., paying property taxes and utilities and insurance); it does not include depreciation or the cost of financing or income taxes
    personal expense
    the cost of personal or family living
    a payment larger than needed or expected
    a payment smaller than needed or expected
    a payment for consecutive issues of a newspaper or magazine for a given period of time
    regular payment
    a payment made at regular times
    blood money
    paid to a hired murderer
    payment or reward (as for service rendered)
    money returned to a payer
    conscience money
    payment made voluntarily to reduce guilt over dishonest dealings
    support payment
    a payment made by one person for the support of another
    payment made in return for a service rendered
    bribe, payoff
    payment made to a person in a position of trust to corrupt his judgment
    (often plural) a payment that is made to a performer or writer or director of a television show or commercial that is paid for every repeat showing
    financial assistance in time of need
    lump sum
    a complete payment consisting of a single sum of money
    final payment, payoff
    the final payment of a debt
    remission, remitment, remittal, remittance
    a payment of money sent to a person in another place
    quittance, repayment
    payment of a debt or obligation
    token payment
    a small payment made in acknowledgement of an obligation
    a payment required for not fulfilling a contract
    an inadequate payment
    insurance premium, premium
    payment for insurance
    a payment of part of a debt; usually paid at regular intervals
    asking price, selling price
    the price at which something is offered for sale
    bid price
    (stock market) the price at which a broker is willing to buy a certain security
    closing price
    (stock market) the price of the last transaction completed during a day's trading session
    factory price
    price charged for goods picked up at the factory
    highway robbery
    an exorbitant price
    purchase price
    the price at which something is actually purchased
    cash price, spot price
    the current delivery price of a commodity traded in the spot market
    support level
    (stock market) the price at which a certain security becomes attractive to investors
    assessed price
    capital cost, cost of capital
    the opportunity cost of the funds employed as the result of an investment decision; the rate of return that a business could earn if it chose another investment with equivalent risk
    carrying charge, carrying cost
    the opportunity cost of unproductive assets; the expense incurred by ownership
    carrying charge
    charge made for carrying an account or for merchandise sold on an installment plan
    depreciation charge
    an amount periodically charged to expense or against revenue in compensation for depreciation of property
    a price that is too low
    a price that is too high
    fare, transportation
    the sum charged for riding in a public conveyance
    fixed charge, fixed cost, fixed costs
    a periodic charge that does not vary with business volume (as insurance or rent or mortgage payments etc.)
    agio, agiotage, exchange premium, premium
    a fee charged for exchanging currencies
    a charge required as compensation for the delay of a ship or freight car or other cargo beyond its scheduled time of departure
    installation charge
    the charge for installing something
    the charge for carrying burdens by porters
    the charge for mailing something
    a charge based on weight measured in pounds
    charge per unit, rate
    amount of a charge or payment relative to some basis
    rate per quarter for water from a public supply
    an additional charge (as for items previously omitted or as a penalty for failure to exercise common caution or common skill)
    service charge, service fee
    a percentage of a bill (as at a hotel or restaurant) added in payment for service
    the charge for stowing goods
    the charge for storing something in tanks
    deposit, down payment
    a partial payment made at the time of purchase; the balance to be paid later
    (law) the payment of a debt or fulfillment of an obligation
    credit, deferred payment
    arrangement for deferred payment for goods and services
    cash, immediate payment
    prompt payment for goods or services in currency or by check
    type of:
    expenditure, expense, outgo, outlay, spending
    money paid out; an amount spent
  3. noun
    the property of having material worth (often indicated by the amount of money something would bring if sold)
    “he couldn't calculate the cost of the collection”
    synonyms: monetary value, price
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    average cost
    total cost for all units bought (or produced) divided by the number of units
    differential cost, incremental cost, marginal cost
    the increase or decrease in costs as a result of one more or one less unit of output
    the quality of being high-priced
    the market value set on assets
    the quality of being affordable
    tax assessment
    the value set on taxable property
    costliness, dearness, preciousness
    the quality possessed by something with a great price or value
    lavishness, luxury, sumptuosity, sumptuousness
    the quality possessed by something that is excessively expensive
    moderateness, modestness, reasonableness
    the property of being moderate in price or expenditures
    bargain rate, cheapness, cut price, cut rate
    a price below the standard price
    type of:
    the quality (positive or negative) that renders something desirable or valuable
  4. noun
    value measured by what must be given or done or undergone to obtain something
    “the cost in human life was enormous”
    synonyms: price, toll
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    death toll
    the number of deaths resulting from some particular cause such as an accident or a battle or a natural disaster
    type of:
    the quality (positive or negative) that renders something desirable or valuable
  5. verb
    require to lose, suffer, or sacrifice
    “This mistake cost him his job”
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    type of:
    ask, call for, demand, involve, necessitate, need, postulate, require, take
    require as useful, just, or proper
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