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[in-stawl-muh nt] /ɪnˈstɔl mənt/
any of several parts into which a debt or other sum payable is divided for payment at successive fixed times:
to pay for furniture in monthly installments.
a single portion of something furnished or issued by parts at successive times:
a magazine serial in six installments.
Origin of installment1
1725-35; in-2 + obsolete (e)stallment, equivalent to estall to arrange payment on an installment plan (perhaps < Anglo-French) + -ment
Related forms
reinstalment, noun


[in-stawl-muh nt] /ɪnˈstɔl mənt/
the act of installing.
the fact of being installed; installation.
1580-90; install + -ment Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for instalment
  • Organized charity might, and indeed did, provide groceries on the instalment plan.
  • The line up for the inaugural instalment of has been unveiled.
  • He replies in the affirmative and says that he has paid off the last instalment due on their house.
  • The due date for the first required instalment is the fifteenth day of the third month of the income year.
  • Rather, those who cannot pay in one go end up locked into fixed instalment plans.
  • He says he never went hungry, but his parents made only a modest living selling merchandise door-to-door, on instalment plans.
  • But as instalment follows sensational instalment, his position remains precarious.
  • Lowering the price thresholds for which instalment plans are available, and extending their length, may make sense in a recession.
British Dictionary definitions for instalment


one of the portions, usually equal, into which a debt is divided for payment at specified intervals over a fixed period
a portion of something that is issued, broadcast, or published in parts, such as a serial in a magazine
Word Origin
C18: from obsolete estallment, probably from Old French estaler to fix, hence to agree rate of payment, from estal something fixed, place, from Old High German stalstall1


another word for installation (sense 1)
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
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Word Origin and History for instalment



"act of installing," 1580s, from install + -ment. Meaning "arrangement of payment by fixed portions at fixed times" is from 1732, alteration of Anglo-French estaler "fix payments," from Old French estal "fixed position," from Old High German stal "standing place" (see stall (n.1)). Figurative sense of "part of a whole produced in advance of the rest" is from 1823.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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