cheap

Definitions

  • WordNet 3.6
    • adj cheap relatively low in price or charging low prices "it would have been cheap at twice the price","inexpensive family restaurants"
    • adj cheap embarrassingly stingy
    • adj cheap of very poor quality; flimsy
    • adj cheap tastelessly showy "a flash car","a flashy ring","garish colors","a gaudy costume","loud sport shirts","a meretricious yet stylish book","tawdry ornaments"
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Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
  • Interesting fact: Adolf Hitler was one of the people that was responsible in the creation of the Volkswagen Beetle. He came up with the idea of producing a car that was cheap enough for the average German working man to afford.
    • n Cheap chēp A bargain; a purchase; cheapness. "The sack that thou hast drunk me would have bought me lights as good cheap at the dearest chandler's in Europe."
    • adv Cheap Cheaply.
    • Cheap Having a low price in market; of small cost or price, as compared with the usual price or the real value. "Where there are a great sellers to a few buyers, there the thing to be sold will be cheap ."
    • Cheap Of comparatively small value; common; mean. "You grow cheap in every subject's eye."
    • v. i Cheap To buy; to bargain.
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Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
  • Interesting fact: Although explorers brought potatoes back from the New World in the early 1500s, Europeans were afraid to eat them for fear that the spuds would give them leprosy. It wasn't until Louis XVI, who was looking for a cheap food source for his starving subjects, served them at the royal table that people were convinced potatoes were safe to eat.
    • cheap To trade; traffic; bargain; chaffer; ask the price of goods; cheapen goods.
    • cheap To bargain for; chaffer for; ask the price of; offer a price for; cheapen.
    • cheap To buy; purchase.
    • cheap To sell.
    • n cheap Trade; traffic; chaffer; chaffering.
    • n cheap A market; a market-place: in this sense extant in several place-names, as Cheapside and Eastcheap in London, Chepstow, etc.
    • n cheap Price.
    • n cheap A low price; a bargain: especially in the phrases good cheap and great cheap (see below).
    • n cheap Cheapness; lowness of price; abundance of supply.
    • n cheap In abundant supply; at a low price; cheap: used adjectively or adverbially. [Now simply cheap. See cheap, a.]
    • n cheap literally, great or large market-trade, An abundant supply; cheapness.
    • n cheap In abundant supply; at a low price; cheap.
    • cheap Rated at a low price or cost; purchasable or obtainable at a low price or cost, either as compared with the usual price or cost, or with the real value, or, more vaguely, with the price of other things; relatively inexpensive.
    • cheap Of small intrinsic value or esteem; common; commonplace; mean; costing little effort to obtain, practise, influence, etc.: as, to make one's self cheap.
    • cheap Getting off cheaply, or without losing much (or so much as one deserves): as, to be cheap o′ t.
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Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
  • Interesting fact: More than 5,000 years ago, the Chinese discovered how to make silk from silkworm cocoons. For about 3,000 years, the Chinese kept this discovery a secret. Because poor people could not afford real silk, they tried to make other cloth look silky. Women would beat on cotton with sticks to soften the fibers. Then they rubbed it against a big stone to make it shiny. The shiny cotton was called "chintz." Because chintz was a cheaper copy of silk, calling something "chintzy" means it is cheap and not of good quality.
    • adj Cheap chēp low in price: of a place where prices are low, as 'a cheap market:' of a low price in relation to the value: easily obtained: of small value, or reckoned at such
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Quotations

  • Lady Mary Wortley Montagu
    Lady%20Mary%20Wortley%20Montagu
    “No entertainment is so cheap as reading, nor is any pleasure so lasting.”
  • Sir Walter Raleigh
    Sir%20Walter%20Raleigh
    “Talking much is a sign of vanity, for the one who is lavish with words is cheap in deeds.”
  • Hosea Ballou
    Hosea%20Ballou
    “Real happiness is cheap enough, yet how dearly we pay for its counterfeit.”
  • Abraham Cowley
    Abraham Cowley
    “Of all ills that one endures, hope is a cheap and universal cure.”
  • A. Owen Penny
    A. Owen Penny
    “Mere words are cheap and plenty enough, but ideas that rouse and set multitudes thinking come as gold for the mines.”
  • Franklin P. Jones
    Franklin%20P.%20Jones
    “Anybody who thinks talk is cheap should get some legal advice.”

Idioms

Cheap as chips - (UK) If something is very inexpensive, it is as cheap as chips.
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Cheap at half the price - If something's cheap at half the price, it's very cheap indeed.
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Cheap shot - A cheap shot is an unprincipled criticism.
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On the cheap - If you do something on the cheap, you spend as little as possible to do it.
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Talk is cheap - It's easy to talk about something but harder to actually do it.
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To be dog cheap - If something's dog cheap, it is very cheap indeed.
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Etymology

Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
AS. ceáp, bargain, sale, price; akin to D. koop, purchase, G. kauf, Icel. kaup, bargain. Cf. Cheapen Chapman Chaffer Cope, v. i
Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
Orig. good cheap, i.e. a good bargain; A.S. ceap, price, a bargain; A.S. céapian, Ice. kaupa, Ger. kaufen, to buy; Scot. coup—all borrowed from L. caupo, a huckster.

Usage

In literature:

Cheap seed will be found cheap in all senses of the term.
"Amateur Gardencraft" by Eben E. Rexford
Though I cannot prove the charge against him, his brilliancy always makes me suspect him of cheapness.
"A Collection of Stories, Reviews and Essays" by Willa Cather
I am afraid of Bradbury and Evans's desire to force on the cheap issue of my books, or any of them, prematurely.
"The Life of Charles Dickens, Vol. I-III, Complete" by John Forster
As you say, it would be cheap at any money.
"The Letters of Charles Dickens" by Charles Dickens
The comparative cheapness and facility of carriage of the preservative medium.
"Practical Taxidermy" by Montagu Browne
Food is cheap here if you know where to get it; fuel costs more than food.
"Condemned as a Nihilist" by George Alfred Henty
Gude cheer and cheap gars mony haunt the house.
"The Proverbs of Scotland" by Alexander Hislop
Printers like this paper, because it enables them to obtain brilliant impressions from blocks produced by cheap processes.
"Bookbinding, and the Care of Books" by Douglas Cockerell
Nay, says the journal, 'more than any agency, it is the cheapness and abundance of our coal which have made us what we are.
"The Crown of Wild Olive" by John Ruskin
Stocks should be bought when they are cheap.
"Successful Stock Speculation" by John James Butler
Lookin's a cheap entertainment.
"Christopher and the Clockmakers" by Sara Ware Bassett
The Filipinos are very fond of music, and the cheap gramophones appeal to them strongly.
"The Critic in the Orient" by George Hamlin Fitch
Engravers complain that photography and cheap wood-cutting have ended their finer craft.
"Ariadne Florentina" by John Ruskin
Low prices do not alone establish cheapness.
"The Book-Collector" by William Carew Hazlitt
In such cases the "cheap" labour of England is really cheap.
"The Evolution of Modern Capitalism" by John Atkinson Hobson
It would provide cheap and pure food.
"British Socialism" by J. Ellis Barker
Apples are more wholesome than any other fruit, and plentiful and cheap two-thirds of the time; they nourish, cool, and strengthen the body.
"Twenty-Five Cent Dinners for Families of Six" by Juliet Corson
Our clothing was all cheap and ill fitting.
"A Son of the Middle Border" by Hamlin Garland
This is called the Little Conduit in West Cheap, by Paul's Gate.
"Old and New London" by Walter Thornbury
The cheap cuts of meat from the neck, breast, and legs have about as much food matter in them as the more costly parts.
"Health Lessons" by Alvin Davison
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In poetry:

All things are a flowing
Sage Heracleitus say;
But a tawdry cheapness
Shall outlast our days.
"E.P. Ode Pour L'election De Son Sepulchre" by Ezra Pound
And I should think he felt quite cheap
For voting the wrong side;
And when Aunt Kitty scolded him,
He just stood up and cried.
"The Deliverance" by Frances Ellen Watkins
So I’m caught in the end
And get home late at night
Tired and torn to shreds by dogs
Holding a cheap imitation in my hands.
"Paintings" by Marin Sorescu
With fearless eye and ringing cheer
They made that wild advance,
For life was cheap and glory dear,
Those bloody days in France.
"Langemark" by Abner Cosens
"Nay, fore God," then said the monk,
"Me reweth I came so near,
For better cheap I might have dined,
In Blyth or in Doncastere."
"Robin Hood" by Henry Morley
Yes, I say well—said words are cheap!
For action man was born!
What praise will my one talent reap?
What grapes are on my thorn?
"The Disciple" by George MacDonald

In news:

I bought chicken drumsticks this week because they are cheap.
Word spread that Lewiston had good schools, a low crime rate and cheap housing — and the Somalis began arriving in droves.
Cheap Alternatives to TV, DSL , and Cell Service.
Duchamp , for example, says he penciled a mustache and beard onto a cheap reproduction of the Mona Lisa to create "L. H.O.O.Q".
BEFORE spending a week in Luxembourg early last spring, I knew the following things about the place: (1) It used to have dirt-cheap Icelandic Airways flights from New York, much loved in the 1950's by me and my hard-up college chums.
New technology being developed for launch in 2014 would provide cheap and indefinite stellar thrust.
Cheap dishes made from clay that was fired at a low temperature scratch and chip more easily than their higher quality (and priced) counterparts.
I should have known better than to buy cheap dishes.
Ebenezer Scrooge sits at his desk, counting his money while employee Bob Cratchit sits freezing because his employer is too cheap to buy more coal for the fire.
NJ teen invents cheap EKG that works over cell phones.
Microsoft offers cheap upgrades for 8 Pro.
CHEAP EATS My first two girlfriends were boys.
Exxon Plans US Ethylene Plant to Make Use of Cheap Gas.
Evening Dress es, Evening Gown s, Evening Dress ,cheap Evening Dr. A forum for discussion of sports and sports collecting.
Evening Dresses,Evening Gowns,Evening Dress,cheap Evening Dr. A forum for discussion of sports and sports collecting.
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In science:

Laboratory experiments can be cheap and safe, provide relatively repeatable conditions, and can limit the type and range of variations within variables and thus simplify analysis.
A review of wildland fire spread modelling, 1990-present 2: Empirical and quasi-empirical models
While RPCs are cheap to build, reliable to operate (with glass as resistive plates), their single particle detection efficiency decreases substantially with rates of a few 100 Hz/cm2.
CALICE Report to the Calorimeter R&D Review Panel
The desired notion of test coverage is cheap to obtain and scalable.
Exploring the Composition of Unit Test Suites
The general advantages of the radio technique lie in the fact that radio waves are comparatively easy to detect with cheap equipment.
Radio Detection of Particles from the Cosmos
For this reason advanced and cheap optical components are available to build such a laser.
Testing the Stability of the Fine Structure Constant in the Laboratory
Furthermore, for the true random numbers, either the speed of random number generation is limited if the true random numbers are cheap, or otherwise the generators are expensive.
Introduction to Randomness and Statistics
Note that the second approximation, replacing F ˆH by FH ∗ can be made arbitrarily accurate by making K as large as desired, which is computationally cheap.
Introduction to Randomness and Statistics
Furthermore, the step by step management of the grids is not only cheap (it changes the constant of the complexity of the particles movement method but not the order) but also needed for the FMM.
Different goals in multiscale simulations and how to reach them
The principle here is that through the grids we maintain a summary of the simulation, upon which we can then run static data algorithm, all this at a cheap computing price.
Different goals in multiscale simulations and how to reach them
Many nuclear pioneers expected that nuclear fission and fusion would provide their grandchildren with cheap, clean and essentially unlimited energy.
The Future of Nuclear Energy: Facts and Fiction Chapter IV: Energy from Breeder Reactors and from Fusion?
In contrast to such dreams, nuclear fission energy nowadays is not cheap and even the most optimistic nuclear fusion believers do not expect the first commercial fusion reactor prototype until after 2050.
The Future of Nuclear Energy: Facts and Fiction Chapter IV: Energy from Breeder Reactors and from Fusion?
After the second world war, many nuclear pioneers expected that nuclear fusion would provide their grandchildren with cheap, clean and essentially unlimited energy.
The Future of Nuclear Energy: Facts and Fiction Chapter IV: Energy from Breeder Reactors and from Fusion?
Indeed, the technology necessary for generating entanglement is well known and entanglement sources can be extremely compact, cheap and stable in time.
Various quantum nonlocality tests with a simple 2-photon entanglement source
Likewise, if the consumption stays almost constant, price spikes can still appear when a considerable amount of ‘cheap’ generation is withdrawn from the market (due to outages, maintenance, etc.).
Black swans or dragon kings? A simple test for deviations from the power law
The cost of high performance computing (HPC) specific hardware has driven the market for supercomputers to be focused mainly on utilizing relatively cheap off-the-shelf computer parts instead of developing specific supercomputing hardware.
The stellar atmosphere simulation code Bifrost
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