from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. The act, business, or system of insuring.
  • n. The state of being insured.
  • n. A means of being insured.
  • n. Coverage by a contract binding a party to indemnify another against specified loss in return for premiums paid.
  • n. The sum or rate for which such a contract insures something.
  • n. The periodic premium paid for this coverage.
  • n. A protective measure: biking helmets that provide insurance against a head injury.
  • adj. Sports Of, relating to, or being a score that increases a team's lead enough to prevent the opposing team from tying the game with one more score: an insurance run.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. A means of indemnity against a future occurrence of an uncertain event.
  • n. The business of providing insurance.
  • n. Metaphoric: Any attempt to anticipate an unfavorable event.
  • n. Blackjack: A bet made after the deal, which pays off if the dealer has blackjack.
  • n. An insurance policy

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. The act of insuring, or assuring, against loss or damage by a contingent event; a contract whereby, for a stipulated consideration, called premium, one party undertakes to indemnify or guarantee another against loss by certain specified risks. Cf. Assurance, n., 6.
  • n. The premium paid for insuring property or life.
  • n. The sum for which life or property is insured.
  • n. A guaranty, security, or pledge; assurance.
  • n. Any means of assuring against loss; a precaution.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. The act of insuring or assuring against loss; a system of business by which a company or corporation (called an insurance company, or, rarely, assurance company or society) guarantees the insured to a specified extent and under stipulated conditions against pecuniary loss arising from such contingencies as loss of or damage to property by fire or the efforts to extinguish fire (fire-insurance), or by shipwreck or disaster at sea (marine insurance), or by explosion, breakage, or other accidents to property, or the loss of future earnings, either through disablement (accident-insurance) or through death (life-insurance), etc. Also called assurance.
  • n. Specifically In law, a contract by which one party, for an agreed consideration (which is proportioned to the risk involved), undertakes to compensate the other for loss on a specified thing, from specified causes.
  • n. The premium paid for insuring property, life, etc.
  • n. Engagement; betrothal.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • n. written contract or certificate of insurance
  • n. protection against future loss
  • n. promise of reimbursement in the case of loss; paid to people or companies so concerned about hazards that they have made prepayments to an insurance company


from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

From old form ensurance, see also assurance.



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  • See this map for American pronunciation.

    April 14, 2008