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cheap

[cheep] /tʃip/
adjective, cheaper, cheapest.
1.
costing very little; relatively low in price; inexpensive:
a cheap dress.
2.
costing little labor or trouble:
Words are cheap.
3.
charging low prices:
a very cheap store.
4.
of little account; of small value; mean; shoddy:
cheap conduct; cheap workmanship.
5.
embarrassed; sheepish:
He felt cheap about his mistake.
6.
obtainable at a low rate of interest:
when money is cheap.
7.
of decreased value or purchasing power, as currency depreciated due to inflation.
8.
stingy; miserly:
He's too cheap to buy his own brother a cup of coffee.
adverb
9.
at a low price; at small cost:
He is willing to sell cheap.
Idioms
10.
cheap at twice the price, exceedingly inexpensive:
I found this old chair for eight dollars—it would be cheap at twice the price.
11.
on the cheap, Informal. inexpensively; economically:
She enjoys traveling on the cheap.
Origin
900
before 900; Middle English cheep (short for phrases, as good cheep cheap, literally, good bargain), Old English cēap bargain, market, trade; cognate with German Kauf, Old Norse kaup; all < Latin caupō innkeeper, tradesman; see chapman
Related forms
cheapish, adjective
cheapishly, adverb
cheaply, adverb
cheapness, noun
overcheap, adjective
overcheaply, adverb
overcheapness, noun
uncheaply, adverb
Synonyms
1, 4. Cheap, inexpensive agree in their suggestion of low cost. Cheap now usually suggests shoddiness, inferiority, showy imitation, complete unworthiness, and the like: a cheap kind of fur. Inexpensive emphasizes lowness of price (although more expensive than cheap ) and suggests that the value is fully equal to the cost: an inexpensive dress. It is often used as an evasion for the more specific cheap. 4. paltry, low, poor, inferior, base.
Antonyms
1. costly, dear, expensive. 8. generous, charitable.
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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Examples for cheap
  • Plus, many times the prices aren't that cheap for the mediocre quality of the hotels.
  • It says it will pay market prices, but producers are concerned that they may have to sell on the cheap.
  • With the money he bought himself a suit of cheap, flashy clothes.
  • The food sold at bodegas, small markets, and convenience stores in inner cities is frequently of poor quality and cheap.
  • Except if cheap airline tickets are a boost to other businesses and consumers.
  • Beware of cheap eateries that sport big color photos of pizza and piles of different pastas.
  • One of the attractions of the fixed-gear bike is that they are cheap.
  • The craving for cheap wines may be surging, but merely cheap is no bargain.
  • And if it kept kerosene cheap while letting diesel rise in price, it would only increase the scope for arbitrage between the two.
  • Yes, producing hydrogen is not cheap right now, but it is foolish to list that as a negative.
British Dictionary definitions for cheap

cheap

/tʃiːp/
adjective
1.
costing relatively little; inexpensive; good value
2.
charging low prices a cheap hairdresser
3.
of poor quality; shoddy cheap furniture, cheap and nasty
4.
worth relatively little promises are cheap
5.
not worthy of respect; vulgar
6.
ashamed; embarrassed to feel cheap
7.
stingy; miserly
8.
(informal) mean; despicable a cheap liar
9.
cheap as chips, See chip (sense 11)
10.
(informal) dirt cheap, extremely inexpensive
noun
11.
(Brit, informal) on the cheap, at a low cost
adverb
12.
at very little cost
Derived Forms
cheapish, adjective
cheaply, adverb
cheapness, noun
Word Origin
Old English ceap barter, bargain, price, property; related to Old Norse kaup bargain, Old High German kouf trade, Latin caupō innkeeper
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 cheap
adj.

"low in price, that may be bought at small cost," c.1500, ultimately from Old English noun ceap "traffic, a purchase," from ceapian (v.) "trade," probably from an early Germanic borrowing from Latin caupo "petty tradesman, huckster" (see chapman).

The sense evolution is from the noun meaning "a barter, a purchase" to "a purchase as rated by the buyer," hence adjectival meaning "inexpensive," the main modern sense, via Middle English phrases such as god chep "favorable bargain" (12c., a translation of French a bon marché).

Sense of "lightly esteemed, common" is from 1590s (cf. similar evolution of Latin vilis). The meaning "low in price" was represented in Old English by undeor, literally "un-dear" (but deop ceap, literally "deep cheap," meant "high price").

The word also was used in Old English for "market" (cf. ceapdæg "market day"), a sense surviving in place names Cheapside, East Cheap, etc. Related: Cheaply. Expression on the cheap is first attested 1888. Cheap shot originally was U.S. football jargon for a head-on tackle; extended sense "unfair hit" in politics, etc. is by 1970. German billig "cheap" is from Middle Low German billik, originally "fair, just," with a sense evolution via billiger preis "fair price," etc.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Slang definitions & phrases for cheap

cheap

adjective
  1. Stingy; overly frugal; chintzy: Cheap old bastard won't give you the time of day (1827+)
  2. Reputedly easy of sexual conquest; roundheeled: a cheap tramp with a heart of gold (1950s+)
Related Terms

dirt cheap, on the cheap


The Dictionary of American Slang, Fourth Edition by Barbara Ann Kipfer, PhD. and Robert L. Chapman, Ph.D.
Copyright (C) 2007 by HarperCollins Publishers.
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Idioms and Phrases with cheap
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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12
13
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