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

  • n. A gift, payment, declaration, or other acknowledgment of gratitude, respect, or admiration: put up a plaque as a tribute to his generosity.
  • n. Evidence attesting to some praiseworthy quality or characteristic: Winning the scholarship was a tribute to her hard work.
  • n. A payment in money or other valuables made by one ruler or nation to another in acknowledgment of submission or as the price of protection or security.
  • n. A tax imposed for such payment.
  • n. Any payment exacted for protection.
  • n. A payment or tax given by a feudal vassal to an overlord.
  • n. The obligation to make such a payment.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. An acknowledgment of gratitude, respect or admiration; an accompanying gift.
  • n. A payment made by one nation to another in submission.
  • n. Extortion; protection money.
  • n. A payment made by a feudal vassal to his lord.
  • v. To pay as tribute.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. An annual or stated sum of money or other valuable thing, paid by one ruler or nation to another, either as an acknowledgment of submission, or as the price of peace and protection, or by virtue of some treaty.
  • n. A personal contribution, as of money, praise, service, etc., made in token of services rendered, or as that which is due or deserved.
  • n. A certain proportion of the ore raised, or of its value, given to the miner as his recompense.
  • intransitive v. To pay as tribute.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • To pay as tribute.
  • To distribute; bestow; dispose.
  • n. A stated sum of money or other valuable consideration paid by one prince or state to another in acknowledgment of submission, or as the price of peace, security, and protection, or by virtue of some treaty.
  • n. The state of being liable for such a payment; the obligation of contributing.
  • n. Formerly, that which was paid by a subject or a tenant to a sovereign or lord; a tax; rental.
  • n. See the quotation.
  • n. A contribution; an accretion.
  • n. A personal acknowledgment or offering; a mark of devotion, gratitude, or respect.
  • n. In mining, the proportion of ore or its value which a person doing tribute-work receives for his labor.

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

  • n. payment by one nation for protection by another
  • n. something given or done as an expression of esteem
  • n. payment extorted by gangsters on threat of violence


Middle English tribut, from Old French, from Latin tribūtum, from neuter past participle of tribuere, to pay, distribute, from tribus, tribe; see tribe.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
From Middle English, from Old French tribut, from Latin tributum ("tribute, literally 'a thing contributed or paid'"), neuter of tributus, past participle of tribuere ("to assign, allot, grant, give, bestow, etc."), usually derived, from tribus ("tribe"); see tribe. (Wiktionary)


  • All the Strangers that dwelt in the land, were _tributaries_ to the Israelites -- required to pay an annual tribute to the government, either in money, or in public service, which was called a "_tribute of bond-service_;" in other words, all the Strangers were _national servants_, to the Israelites, and the same Hebrew word which is used to designate _individual_ servants, equally designates

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  • And then later this month, Ed Klein (ph), who did the initial book about JFK Jr. and Carolyn, is coming out with what he calls a tribute to Jacqueline Kennedy.

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  • People can give $10 by texting the word "tribute" to the number 20222. Front Page

  • At the same time this is a label tribute to Fairport Convention because in '70's for me this are the purpose of' 'Greathest Hits' 'albums.

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  • The castles were built by the dukes, and barons, and other feudal chieftains of the middle ages, and they are placed in these commanding positions in order that the chieftains who lived in them might watch the river, and the roads leading along the banks of it, and come down with a troop of their followers to exact what they called tribute, but what those who had to pay it called plunder, from the merchants or travellers whom they saw from the windows of their watchtowers, passing up and down.

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  • [5] Bloomfield refers to a poem written in tribute to Alexander Pope, for the text of which, see Letter 68.

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  • Ancient empires typically demanded tribute from the conquered.

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  • We could even build them in tribute to the Berlin Wall, that noted symbol of freedom!!!

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  • Instead, it will be a broader message of a national goodbye and national tribute from the president.

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  • This small tribute is a reminder of how complicated a human life can be.

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  • "This is not the Greatest Song in the World.
    This is just a tribute.
    Couldn't remember the Greatest Song in the World.
    This is a tribute to the Greatest Song in the World."

    January 2, 2007