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cost

[kawst, kost] /kɔst, kɒst/
noun
1.
the price paid to acquire, produce, accomplish, or maintain anything:
the high cost of a good meal.
2.
an outlay or expenditure of money, time, labor, trouble, etc.:
What will the cost be to me?
3.
a sacrifice, loss, or penalty:
to work at the cost of one's health.
4.
costs, Law.
  1. money allowed to a successful party in a lawsuit in compensation for legal expenses incurred, chargeable to the unsuccessful party.
  2. money due to a court or one of its officers for services in a cause.
verb (used with object), cost or for 10, costed; costing.
5.
to require the payment of (money or something else of value) in an exchange:
That camera cost $200.
6.
to result in or entail the loss of:
Carelessness costs lives.
7.
to cause to lose or suffer:
The accident cost her a broken leg.
8.
to entail (effort or inconvenience):
Courtesy costs little.
9.
to cause to pay or sacrifice:
That request will cost us two weeks' extra work.
10.
to estimate or determine the cost of (manufactured articles, new processes, etc.):
We have costed the manufacture of each item.
verb (used without object), costed or cost; costing.
11.
to estimate or determine costs, as of manufacturing something.
Verb phrases, past and past participle costed or cost; present participle costing.
12.
cost out, to calculate the cost of (a project, product, etc.) in advance:
The firm that hired him just costed out a major construction project last month.
Idioms
13.
at all costs, regardless of the effort involved; by any means necessary:
The stolen painting must be recovered at all costs.
Also, at any cost.
Origin
1200-1250
1200-50; (v.) Middle English costen < Anglo-French, Old French co(u)ster < Latin constāre to stand together, be settled, cost; cf. constant; (noun) Middle English < Anglo-French, Old French, noun derivative of the v.
Related forms
costless, adjective
costlessness, noun
recost, verb (used with object), recost, recosting.
Synonyms
1. charge, expense, expenditure, outlay. See price. 3. detriment.
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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British Dictionary definitions for at any cost

cost

/kɒst/
noun
1.
the price paid or required for acquiring, producing, or maintaining something, usually measured in money, time, or energy; expense or expenditure; outlay
2.
suffering or sacrifice; loss; penalty: count the cost to your health, I know to my cost
3.
  1. the amount paid for a commodity by its seller: to sell at cost
  2. (as modifier): the cost price
4.
(pl) (law) the expenses of judicial proceedings
5.
at any cost, at all costs, regardless of cost or sacrifice involved
6.
at the cost of, at the expense of losing
verb costs, costing, cost
7.
(transitive) to be obtained or obtainable in exchange for (money or something equivalent); be priced at: the ride cost one pound
8.
to cause or require the expenditure, loss, or sacrifice (of): the accident cost him dearly
9.
to estimate the cost of (a product, process, etc) for the purposes of pricing, budgeting, control, etc
Derived Forms
costless, adjective
Word Origin
C13: from Old French (n), from coster to cost, from Latin constāre to stand at, cost, from stāre to stand
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 at any cost

cost

n.

c.1200, from Old French cost (12c., Modern French coût) "cost, outlay, expenditure; hardship, trouble," from Vulgar Latin *costare, from Latin constare, literally "to stand at" (or with), with a wide range of figurative senses including "to cost." The idiom is the same one used in Modern English when someone says something "stands at X dollars" to mean it sells for X dollars. The Latin word is from com- "with" (see com-) + stare "to stand," from PIE root *sta- "to stand" (see stet).

v.

late 14c., from Old French coster (Modern French coûter) "to cost," from cost (see cost (n.)).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Idioms and Phrases with at any cost

at any cost

Also, at any price . See at all costs
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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