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[pur-kwuh-zit] /ˈpɜr kwə zɪt/
an incidental payment, benefit, privilege, or advantage over and above regular income, salary, or wages:
Among the president's perquisites were free use of a company car and paid membership in a country club.
a gratuity or tip.
something demanded or due as a particular privilege:
homage that was once the perquisite of royalty.
late Middle English
1400-50; late Middle English < Medieval Latin perquīsītum something acquired, noun use of neuter of Latin perquīsītus (past participle of perquīrere to search everywhere for, inquire diligently). See per-, inquisitive
Can be confused
perquisite, prerequisite. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for perquisites
  • Of course the one of the perquisites of a reasoned critique is that you have read the paper you critiqued.
  • There is also no question that many sabbaticals are paid vacations that come around as perquisites of time in grade.
  • They still have their admin doled annual raises and perquisites to consider.
  • No, it is not a roster of hidden perquisites granted to retiring chief executives.
  • The sycophants around the colossus's feet speculate on his downfall while they look to their own perquisites.
  • Often, the small monetary value of perquisites belies their significance.
  • Describe the requirements for due process as well as consideration and perquisites to discipline.
  • Some perquisites, such as extra vacation, should be given only as a reward for extraordinary service to your company.
British Dictionary definitions for perquisites


an incidental benefit gained from a certain type of employment, such as the use of a company car
a customary benefit received in addition to a regular income
a customary tip
something expected or regarded as an exclusive right
Often (informal) shortened to perk
Word Origin
C15: from Medieval Latin perquīsītum an acquired possession, from Latin perquīrere to seek earnestly for something, from per- (thoroughly) + quaerere to ask for, seek
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 perquisites



mid-15c., "property acquired other than by inheritance," from Medieval Latin perquisitum "thing gained, profit," in classical Latin, "thing sought after," noun use of neuter past participle of perquirere "to seek, ask for," from per- "thoroughly" (see per) + quærere "to seek" (see query (v.)). For Latin vowel change, see acquisition. General meaning "fee or profit on top of regular wages" first recorded 1560s.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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