When you purchase a pair of shoes, you buy them. If you want to gain purchase, or favor, with new friends, you might tell them about your recent purchase of chocolate, and offer to share.

Purchase can refer to the act of buying or the thing you bought. In 1803, the United States paid France approximately $15,000,000 for 800,000 acres of land which was called Louisiana, in a transaction known as the Louisiana Purchase. In this transaction, the purchase nearly doubled the size of the U.S. — the territory purchased comprises about 23 percent of current U.S. land.

Definitions of purchase
  1. verb
    obtain by purchase; acquire by means of a financial transaction
    “The family purchased a new car”
    synonyms: buy
    be worth or be capable of buying
    see moresee less
    exchange or deliver for money or its equivalent
    be sold at a certain price or in a certain way
    show more antonyms...
    show 8 types...
    hide 8 types...
    buy back, repurchase
    buy what had previously been sold, lost, or given away
    buy, select
    subscribe, subscribe to, take
    receive or obtain regularly
    buy out, buy up, take over
    take over ownership of; of corporations and companies
    pick up
    buy casually or spontaneously
    buy food, take out
    purchase prepared food to be eaten at home
    buy on impulse without proper reflection
    type of:
    acquire, get
    come into the possession of something concrete or abstract
  2. noun
    something acquired by purchase
    see moresee less
    show 5 types...
    hide 5 types...
    stock buyback
    a corporation's purchase of its own outstanding stock; increases earnings/share so stock price rises (which can discourage a takeover attempt)
    bargain, buy, steal
    an advantageous purchase
    something for which one is required to pay money
    a very small sum
    travel bargain
    a bargain rate for travellers on commercial routes (usually air routes)
    type of:
    something acquired
  3. noun
    the acquisition of something for payment
    “they closed the purchase with a handshake”
    see moresee less
    show 5 types...
    hide 5 types...
    buyback, redemption, repurchase
    the act of purchasing back something previously sold
    buying, purchasing
    the act of buying
    searching for or buying goods or services
    catalog buying, mail-order buying
    buying goods to be shipped through the mail
    viatication, viaticus
    purchasing insurance policies for cash from terminally ill policy holders
    type of:
    the act of contracting or assuming or acquiring possession of something
  4. noun
    the mechanical advantage gained by being in a position to use a lever
    synonyms: leverage
    see moresee less
    type of:
    mechanical phenomenon
    a physical phenomenon associated with the equilibrium or motion of objects
  5. noun
    a means of exerting influence or gaining advantage
    “he could get no purchase on the situation”
    see moresee less
    type of:
    the effect of one thing (or person) on another
Word Family

Test prep from the experts

Boost your test score with programs developed by’s experts.

  • Proven methods: Learn faster, remember longer with our scientific approach.
  • Personalized plan: We customize your experience to maximize your learning.
  • Strategic studying: Focus on the words that are most crucial for success.


  • Number of words: 500+
  • Duration: 8 weeks or less
  • Time: 1 hour / week


  • Number of words: 500+
  • Duration: 10 weeks or less
  • Time: 1 hour / week


  • Number of words: 700+
  • Duration: 10 weeks
  • Time: 1 hour / week