Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition.

  • adjective Equivalent in effect or value.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • Equivalent, as in value, force, effect, or signification.
  • To be tantamount or equivalent.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English.

  • adjective Equivalent in value, signification, or effect.
  • intransitive verb obsolete To be tantamount or equivalent; to amount.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

  • verb obsolete To amount to as much; to be equivalent.
  • noun obsolete Something which has the same value or amount (as something else). (attributive use passing into adjective, below)
  • adjective Equivalent in meaning or effect.

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

  • adjective being essentially equal to something

Etymologies

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

[From obsolete tantamount, an equivalent, from Anglo-Norman tant amunter, to amount to as much : tant, so much, so great (from Latin tantum, neuter of tantus, from tam, so; see to- in Indo-European roots) + amunter, to amount to, variant of Old French amonter; see amount.]

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

From Anglo-Norman tant amunter.

Examples

  • It began when the band refused permission for their music to be covered by the Glee cast, which they described as tantamount to "selling out".

    The Guardian World News

  • He faced a wave of criticism for saying Monday that Texas would treat Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke "ugly" if he pursues more stimulus -- an action he described as tantamount to treason.

    FOXNews.com

  • I consider the regime's retreat in the matter of women's political participation-which at one point it called tantamount to prostitution-an extremely positive point.

    AWID RSS Feed

  • One of the McCain campaign's chief assaults on Barack Obama is that McCain is insisting that the troops return only after "victory" in Iraq, while Obama refuses to use that word -- a position the McCain forces describe as tantamount to wanting to lose.

    Petraeus: I Don't Know That I Will Ever Use The Word "Victory" For Iraq

  • One of the McCain campaign's chief assaults on Barack Obama is that McCain is insisting that the troops return only after "victory" in Iraq, while Obama refuses to use that word -- a position the McCain forces describe as tantamount to wanting to lose.

    Iraq

  • And it was this move, Rob, that North Korea called tantamount to a declaration of war.

    CNN Transcript May 28, 2009

  • He was received with flawless, cold courtesy—the “ceremonious civility” which Washington had once described as tantamount to incivility.

    Washington

  • He was received with flawless, cold courtesy—the “ceremonious civility” which Washington had once described as tantamount to incivility.

    Washington

  • He was received with flawless, cold courtesy—the “ceremonious civility” which Washington had once described as tantamount to incivility.

    Washington

  • He was received with flawless, cold courtesy—the “ceremonious civility” which Washington had once described as tantamount to incivility.

    Washington

Comments

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  • being essentially equal to something

    In many situations, remaining silent is tantamount to admitting guilt, so speak to prove your innocence.

    October 19, 2016