American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition
- v. To act as a patron to; support or sponsor.
- v. To go to as a customer, especially on a regular basis.
- v. To treat in a condescending manner.
Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
- To act as patron toward; give support or countenance to; favor; assist: as, to patronize an undertaking; to patronize an opinion.
- To assume the air of a patron toward; notice in a superciliously condescending way.
- To ascribe to a person as patron or the responsible party.
- Also spelled patronise.
- v. transitive To make a patron.
- v. transitive To assume a tone of unjustified superiority; to talk down to; to treat condescendingly.
- v. transitive To make oneself a customer of a business, especially a regular customer.
GNU Webster's 1913
- v. To act as patron toward; to support; to countenance; to favor; to aid.
- v. Commercial Cant To trade with customarily; to frequent as a customer.
- v. To assume the air of a patron, or of a superior and protector, toward; -- used in an unfavorable sense.
- v. be a regular customer or client of
- v. do one's shopping at; do business with; be a customer or client of
- v. treat condescendingly
- v. assume sponsorship of
- Old English patron (reborrowed from Latin patronus, derived from Latin pater ("father")) + -ize (“(verb ending)”). (Wiktionary)
“The word patronize can be used about a Starbucks without too much of a pejorative flavor to it, although I patronize Peets almost exclusively!”
“She had not yet learned to use the word patronize in the social sense, and she was at a loss to describe the attitude of Mrs. Duncan and her daughter, though her instinct had registered it.”
“Mrs. Ludgate was decided by the word patronize: she took the hat, and desired that it should be set down in her bill: but Mrs. la Mode was extremely concerned that she had made a rule, nay a vow, not to take any thing but ready money for the spring hats; and she could not break her vow, even for her favourite Mrs. Ludgate.”
“It would seem that there are only a few artists we can actually 'patronize' enthusiastically--Jim Caviezel, Eduardo Verastegui...”
“This will enable doctors and other medical advisers to refer patients to, and will cause patients to "patronize," the better providers, who, if Teisberg and Porter are right, also will often be the less expensive ones because their quality will in part reflect experience and, in various ways, consequent efficiency.”
“They "patronize," he suggests, the real rhythms of American Jews, "their time-honored self-images," not to mention the peculiarly Jewish anxieties and content which exercise Halkin, many Israelis, and, presumably, himself.”
“patronize" is quite the proper word to use in this connection.”
“I'm not going to hurt you or to "patronize":) I hoped that my answer to you and will be useful for others members.”
“But we scarcely believe a respectable audience would not patronize or encourage Negro buffo songs here.”
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