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Related to pay for: Pay for performance
1. Literally, to pay money for something that incurs a cost. You're going to have to pay for the vase that your son broke. We weren't having to pay for the water we used where we used to live, so we were shocked when our first water bill came in the mail after moving to this country.
2. To cover the expense of someone else. I'd rather that you don't pay for me—I think people on first dates should share the cost of the evening. We don't have the money to pay for every client who comes to us with a sob story.
3. To suffer as a punishment or atonement for some ill deed or wrongdoing. Mark my words—you'll pay for double-crossing us! The children are all paying for the crimes of their father.
pay for something
1. Lit. to pay out money for something. Did you pay for the magazine, or shall I? No, I'll pay for it.
2. Fig. to suffer punishment for something. The criminal will pay for his crimes. I don't like what you did to me, and I'm going to see that you pay for it. Max paid for his wicked ways.
1. Cover the expenses of, defray the cost of, as in I'll pay for your movie ticket, or This truck will pay for itself within a year. [Mid-1300s]
2. Atone for, suffer for, as in He may have looked like a good manager, but his successor will end up paying for his mistakes . [Late 1600s]
1. To give some amount of money in return for something: I paid $12 for those gloves. Did you pay for our meal yet?
2. To bear a cost or penalty as a result of some action: You will pay for your laziness when you take your exams and do badly.