A treasury is a kind of bank — it's a place where money and other valuable things are kept, or where a country keeps its wealth.

You might guess that a treasury is a place to keep your treasure, and you'd be right. Originally, the word literally meant "room for treasure," from the Old French tresor, "hoard or treasure." Starting in the late 1300s, it also meant "department that controls public revenue," which remains the most common use of treasury today. The U.S. even has an official Department of the Treasury, the part of the executive branch that prints money and collects taxes.

Definitions of treasury
  1. noun
    a depository (a room or building) where wealth and precious objects can be kept safely
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    type of:
    deposit, depositary, depository, repository
    a facility where things can be deposited for storage or safekeeping
  2. noun
    the funds of a government or institution or individual
    synonyms: coffer, exchequer
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    public treasury, till, trough
    a treasury for government funds
    the treasury of a public institution or religious order
    a subordinate treasury or place of deposit
    a state treasury or exchequer or a royal treasury; originally the public treasury of Rome or the emperor's private purse
    type of:
    cash in hand, finances, funds, monetary resource, pecuniary resource
    assets in the form of money
  3. noun
    the government department responsible for collecting and managing and spending public revenues
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    type of:
    government department
    a department of government
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