income

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English[edit]

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Etymology[edit]

From Middle English, equivalent to in- +‎ come. Cognate with Dutch inkomen (income, earnings, gainings), German Einkommen (income, earnings, competence), Icelandic innkváma (income), Danish indkomst (income), Swedish inkomst (income).

Pronunciation[edit]

Noun[edit]

income (plural incomes)

  1. Money one earns by working or by capitalising on the work of others.
    • 1918, W. B. Maxwell, chapter 23, The Mirror and the Lamp:
      The struggle with ways and means had recommenced, more difficult now a hundredfold than it had been before, because of their increasing needs. Their income disappeared as a little rivulet that is swallowed by the thirsty ground.
    • 2010 Dec. 4, Evan Thomas, "Why It’s Time to Worry", Newsweek (retrieved 16 June 2013):
      In 1970 the richest 1 percent made 9 percent of the nation’s income; now that top slice makes closer to 25 percent.
    • 2013 June 7, Joseph Stiglitz, “Globalisation is about taxes too”, The Guardian Weekly, volume 188, number 26, page 19: 
      It is the starving of the public sector which has been pivotal in America no longer being the land of opportunity – with a child's life prospects more dependent on the income and education of its parents than in other advanced countries.
  2. (obsolete) A coming in; arrival; entrance; introduction.
  3. (archaic or dialectal, Scotland) A new-comer or arrival; an incomer.
  4. (obsolete) An entrance-fee.
  5. (archaic) A coming in as by influx or inspiration, hence, an inspired quality or characteristic, as courage or zeal; an inflowing principle.
  6. (UK dialectal, Scotland) A disease or ailment without known or apparent cause, as distinguished between one induced by accident or contagion; an oncome.

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