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[gruh-too-i-tee, -tyoo-] /grəˈtu ɪ ti, -ˈtyu-/
noun, plural gratuities.
a gift of money, over and above payment due for service, as to a waiter or bellhop; tip.
something given without claim or demand.
  1. a bonus granted to war veterans by the government.
  2. a bonus given military personnel on discharge or retirement.
Origin of gratuity
1515-25; < Middle French gratuite, equivalent to Latin grātuī(tus) free + Middle French -te -ty2 Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for gratuity
  • Some restaurants do not highlight the included gratuity when charged.
  • Many restaurants add a gratuity to the bill for parties of six or more.
  • If you don't notice the gratuity envelope on your table, you'll be reminded.
  • Visitors are expected to provide the wardens with a substantial gratuity in addition to the park fee.
  • Prices below do not include tax, gratuity or any special drinks and coffees.
  • Once you get there, you don't have to spend another penny beyond gratuity.
  • He never took a fee, but pleaded all causes without any gratuity.
  • Trumbull realized one thousand dollars, and a gratuity of one hundred copies of the work.
  • Carefully examine your bill before paying because in some cases, gratuity may have been included.
  • Do not leave the gratuity on a pillow or desk unless the hotel provides explicit envelopes for them.
British Dictionary definitions for gratuity


noun (pl) -ties
a gift or reward, usually of money, for services rendered; tip
something given without claim or obligation
(military) a financial award granted for long or meritorious service
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 gratuity

1520s, "graciousness," from French gratuité (14c.) or directly from Medieval Latin gratuitatem (nominative gratuitas) "free gift," probably from Latin gratuitus "free, freely given" (see gratuitous). Meaning "money given for favor or services" is first attested 1530s.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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