wa·​ger | \ ?wā-j?r How to pronounce wager (audio) \

Definition of wager

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1a : something (such as a sum of money) risked on an uncertain event : stake
b : something on which bets are laid : gamble do a stunt as a wager
2 archaic : an act of giving a pledge to take and abide by the result of some action


wagered; wagering\ ?wāj-​ri? How to pronounce wagering (audio) , ?wā-​j?-​ \

Definition of wager (Entry 2 of 2)

intransitive verb

: to make a bet

transitive verb

: to risk or venture on a final outcome specifically : to lay as a gamble : bet wager $5 on a horse

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Other Words from wager


wagerer \ ?wā-​j?r-​?r How to pronounce wagerer (audio) \ noun

Synonyms for wager

Synonyms: Noun

Synonyms: Verb

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Examples of wager in a Sentence

Noun He has a wager on the game. I don't think the horse will win. What's your wager? Verb She wagered $50 on the game. I wouldn't wager against them.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Investors, who just weeks ago shunned the fuel and the companies that sell it, are unwinding wagers that prices will fall, bidding up producers’ beaten-down shares and even buying their new bonds. Matt Wirz, WSJ, "Rising Natural Gas Prices Are a Hot Bet," 1 May 2020 There are stories about the immense hardships faced by migrant workers, daily wagers, health workers, and people with disabilities. Ashwini Deshpande, Quartz India, "Protecting women is missing from pandemic management measures in India," 27 Mar. 2020 Williams wagers that in an age of dangerous populism his dual perspective is a better way of seeing race than always going on about white supremacy. Darryl Pinckney, The New York Review of Books, "Escaping Blackness," 10 Mar. 2020 Noted British bookmaker William Hill is taking bets on both Asian leagues in Nevada and Jersey and accepting wagers on Korean baseball in Iowa. NBC News, "U.S. gets glimpse of pandemic pro baseball in Korea: Empty stadiums and other quirks," 5 May 2020 Since the Suns +135 actually have a better winning percentage on the road (11-14) compared to home (10-17), and the Nuggets -162 is too chalky of a number, PASS on moneyline wager in Nuggets-Suns. Geoff Clark, USA TODAY Sportsbook Wire, "Denver Nuggets at Phoenix Suns odds, picks and best bets," 8 Feb. 2020 Southland Casino Racing began accepting wagers Tuesday for the upcoming Super Bowl, as well as on NBA games, college basketball, NASCAR racing, PGA tournaments and more, the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette reports. USA TODAY, "Mammoth Cave sharks, waterfall chasing, Valentine’s divorce: News from around our 50 states," 31 Jan. 2020 New Jersey has seen a surge in sports bets since the state convinced the U.S. Supreme Court to overturn a ban on such wagers last year. Time, "New Jersey's Train Stations Are Turning Into Gambling Hubs for New Yorkers," 6 Jan. 2020 The new coach at Iona made a wager with his son Richard Pitino on the outcome of tonight's WWE title bout between Brock Lesnar and Drew McIntyre. Steve Gardner, USA TODAY, "Rick Pitino challenges son Richard to bet on outcome of WrestleMania title bout," 5 Apr. 2020 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb Under our bill, sports wagering on colleges is allowed. Adam Baum, Cincinnati.com, "Where do things stand in Ohio with legalized sports wagering? Well, it's complicated.," 25 Apr. 2020 The proposal would also pave the way for sports wagering at lottery-like kiosks. Jason Grotto, ProPublica, "What Other States Can Learn From What Happened in Illinois After It Legalized Gambling," 6 Mar. 2020 Under the bill, Mohegan Tribe and Mashantucket Pequot Tribal Nation would only have rights to sports wagering on their reservations. Joseph De Avila, WSJ, "Connecticut Governor Clashes With Tribes on Sports Betting," 3 Mar. 2020 But with the start-up expenses, sports wagering with the Oregon Lottery ended up a loser. oregonlive, "Canzano: Oregon Lottery Scoreboard is hamstrung with college sports wagering ban," 25 Feb. 2020 FanDuel, which has also become a leading sports wagering company in some states where that practice is legal, will be piggybacking on Suffolk Downs’ existing online business. BostonGlobe.com, "It’s now pursuing plans to resume racing in Great Barrington, which is among several horse racing-related proposals that need the approval of the state Legislature.," 6 Dec. 2019 Ameristar Casino's partnership with DraftKing to offer mobile wagering is proving to be a winning gamble, with the East Chicago casino's sports wagering tax in October far outpacing competitors in the region offering in-house sportsbooks only. Karen Caffarini, chicagotribune.com, "Mobile sports wagering platform proves to be smart bet for Ameristar," 14 Nov. 2019 The state Gaming Control Board announced Tuesday that horse racing third-party facilitators now can acquire a license to offer advance deposit wagering online. Andrea Perez Balderrama, Detroit Free Press, "Michigan OKs online wagering for horse racing," 6 May 2020 Investors are wagering that the economic impact of the pandemic isn’t going to be as dire as was first thought, and that large parts of the economy will recover pretty quickly. John Cassidy, The New Yorker, "Who’s Right About the Economy—Jared Kushner or the Chairman of the Federal Reserve?," 30 Apr. 2020

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'wager.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of wager


14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a


1602, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense

History and Etymology for wager


Middle English wageour pledge, bet, from Anglo-French wageure, from *wager

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Time Traveler for wager

Time Traveler

The first known use of wager was in the 14th century

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Statistics for wager

Last Updated

24 May 2020

Cite this Entry

“Wager.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, http://www.hajikun.com/dictionary/wager. Accessed 27 May. 2020.

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More Definitions for wager


How to pronounce wager (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of wager

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: an agreement in which people try to guess what will happen and the person who guesses wrong has to give something (such as money) to the person who guesses right
: the money or other valuable thing that you could win or lose in a bet



English Language Learners Definition of wager (Entry 2 of 2)

: to risk losing something (such as money) if your guess about what will happen is wrong
informal used in the phrase I'll wager to indicate what you think will happen or what you believe is probably true


wa·​ger | \ ?wā-j?r How to pronounce wager (audio) \

Kids Definition of wager

 (Entry 1 of 2)

2 : the act of betting


wagered; wagering

Kids Definition of wager (Entry 2 of 2)

: to bet on the result of a contest or question

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More from Merriam-Webster on wager

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for wager

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with wager

Spanish Central: Translation of wager

Nglish: Translation of wager for Spanish Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about wager

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