9 Grammatical Pitfalls


[lahr-jes, lahr-jis] /lɑrˈdʒɛs, ˈlɑr dʒɪs/
generous bestowal of gifts.
the gift or gifts, as of money, so bestowed.
Obsolete. generosity; liberality.
Also, largesse.
Origin of largess
1175-1225; Middle English largesse < Old French; see large, -ice
Can be confused
large, largess. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for largesse
  • Frugal clients might wonder if such largesse translates into marginally higher billing rates.
  • Knight's largesse fits with the university's mission.
  • The fig-leaf covering this largesse is the idea that ethanol is a clean fuel.
  • And perhaps it's even more perplexing that the recipient of all this largesse somehow managed to piddle it all away.
  • Take away the federal largesse and they will leave the business of higher ed.
  • In a crowded country, where scarce fertile land is valued as gold, such largesse represented undreamt-of empowerment for the poor.
  • They appear, from other reports, to be subsisting on corporate welfare as well as the largesse of the rest of us.
  • Royal largesse was matched by countless widows' mites.
  • Yet when it comes to money, even the nation's scientific luminaries are inextricably tethered to public and private largesse.
  • But the government cannot carry on handing out such largesse for ever.
British Dictionary definitions for largesse


the generous bestowal of gifts, favours, or money
the things so bestowed
generosity of spirit or attitude
Word Origin
C13: from Old French, from large
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for largesse

also largess, "willingness to give or spend freely; munificence," c.1200, from Old French largesse "a bounty, munificence," from Vulgar Latin *largitia "abundance," from Latin largus "abundant" (see large). In medieval theology, "the virtue whose opposite is avarice, and whose excess is prodigality" ["Middle English Dictionary"]. The Old French suffix -esse is from Latin -itia, added to adjectives to form nouns of quality (cf. duress, riches).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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