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To make amends; to supply an equivalent; followed by for; as, nothing can compensate for the loss of reputation. This word is generally accented on the second syllable, most unfortunately, as any ear will determine by the feebleness of the last syllables in the participles, compens'ated, compens'ating. Each seeming want compensated of course. – Pope. With the primary accent on the first syllable, and the secondary accent on the third, this defect, and the difficulty of uttering distinctly the last syllables are remedied.

COM'PEN-SATE, v.t. [L. compenso; con and penso, to prize or value, from pendo, to weigh, to value. See Pendent.]

  1. To give equal value to; to recompense; to give an equivalent for services, or an amount lost or bestowed; to return or bestow that which makes good a loss, or is estimated a sufficient remuneration; as, to compensate a laborer for his work, or a merchant for his losses.
  2. To be equivalent in value or effect to; to counterbalance; to make amends for. The length of the night and the dews do compensate the heat of the day. – Bacon. The pleasures of sin never compensate the sinner for the miseries he suffers, even in this life. – Anon.


Recompensed; supplied with an equivalent in amount or effect; rewarded.


Giving an equivalent; recompensing; remunerating.


  1. That which is given or received as an equivalent for services, debt, want, loss, or suffering; amends; remuneration; recompense. All other debts may compensation find. – Dryden. The pleasures of life are no compensation for the loss of divine favor and protection.
  2. That which supplies the place of something else, or makes good a deficiency. – Paley.
  3. In law, a set-off; the payment of a debt by a credit of equal amount.


Making amends or compensation.


Serving for compensation; making amends.

COM-PENSE', v.t. [compens'.]

To recompense, is found in Bacon, but is not now in use.

COM-PETE', v.i. [L. competo; con and peto.]

  1. To seek, or strive for the same thing as another; to carry on competition or rivalry. Our manufacturers compete with the English in making cotton cloths.
  2. To strive or claim to be equal. The sages of antiquity will not dare to compete with the inspired authors. Milner.

COM'PE-TENCE, or COM'PE-TEN-CY, n. [L. competens, competo, to be meet or fit; con and peto, to seek; properly, to press, urge or come to. Primarily, fitness; suitableness; convenience. Hence,]

  1. Sufficiency; such a quantity as is sufficient; property or means of subsistence sufficient to furnish the necessaries and conveniences of life, without superfluity. Reason's whole pleasure, all the joys of sense, / Lie in three words, health, peace, and competence. – Pope.
  2. Sufficiency, applied to other things than property; but this application is less common.
  3. Legal capacity or qualifications; fitness; as, the competence of a witness, which consists in his having the qualifications required by law, as age, soundness of mind, impartiality, &c.
  4. Right or authority; legal power or capacity to take cognizance of a cause; as, the competence of a judge or court to examine and decide. – Kent.
  5. Fitness; adequacy; suitableness; legal sufficiency; as the competency of evidence. – Sewall.


  1. Suitable; fit; convenient; hence, sufficient, that is, fit for the purpose; adequate; followed by to; as, competent supplies of food and clothing; a competent force; an army competent to the preservation of the kingdom or state; a competent knowledge of the world. This word usually implies a moderate supply, a sufficiency without superfluity.
  2. Qualified; fit; having legal capacity or power; as, a competent judge or court; a competent witness. In a judge or court, it implies right or authority to hear and determine; in a witness, it implies a legal right or capacity to testify.
  3. Incident; belonging; having adequate power or right. That is the privilege of the infinite author of things, who never slumbers nor sleeps, but is not competent to any finite being. Locke. It is not competent to the defendant to alledge fraud in the plaintif.


Sufficiently; adequately; suitably; reasonably; as, the fact has been competently proved; a church is competently endowed.

COM-PET'I-BLE, a. [Not now used.]

See Compatible.


Striving in rivalry.

COM-PE-TI'TION, n. [Low L. competitio. See Compete and Competence.]

  1. The act of seeking, or endeavoring to gain, what another is endeavoring to gain, at the same time; rivalry; mutual strife for the same object; also, strife for superiority; as, the competition of two candidates for an office, or of two poets for superior reputation.
  2. A state of rivalship; a state of having equal claims. A portrait, with which one of Titian's could not come in competition. – Dryden.
  3. Double claim; claim of more than one to the same thing; formerly with to, now with for. Competition to the crown there is none, nor can be. Bacon There is no competition but for the second place. Dryden.


  1. One who seeks and endeavors to obtain what another seeks; or one who claims what another claims; a rival. They can not brook competitors in love. – Shak.
  2. An opponent. Shak.


Rivaling; acting in competition. Dangers of the country.


A female competitor.

COM-PI-LA'TION, n. [See Compile.]

  1. A collection of certain parts of a book or books, into a separate book or pamphlet.
  2. A collection or assemblage of other substances; or the act of collecting and forming an aggregate. – Woodward.


A collector. [Not used.] – Chaucer.

COM-PILE', v.t. [L. compilo, to pilfer or plunder; con and pilo, to pillage, to peel, and to drive close; compilatio, a pillaging; It. compilare; Fr. compiler; Sp. and Port. compilar. The L. pilo is the English, to peel, to strip; but pilo, to make thick, or drive together, is the Gr. πιλοω, lanas cogo, coarcto, constipo. Compile is probably from peeling, picking out, selecting and putting together.]

  1. To collect parts or passages of books or writings into a book or pamphlet; to select and put together parts of an author, or to collect parts of different authors; or to collect and arrange separate papers, laws, or customs, in a book, code or system.
  2. To write; to compose. In poetry, they compile the praises of virtuous men and actions. – Temple.
  3. To contain; to comprise. [Not used.] – Spenser.
  4. To make up; to compose. [Not used.] – Shak.
  5. To put together; to build. [Not used.] – Spenser.


Collected from authors; selected and put together.


The act of piling together or heaping; coacervation. [Little used.] Woodward.


A collector of parts of authors, or of separate papers or accounts; one who forms a book or composition from various authors or separate papers. – Bacon. Swift.


Collecting and arranging parts of books, or separate papers, in a body or composition.