Meaning of OFFER in English

I. ˈȯfə(r), ˈäf- verb

( offered ; offered ; offering -f(ə)riŋ ; offers )

Etymology: Middle English offren, offeren, in sense 1, from Old English offrian, from Late Latin offerre, from Latin, to present, tender, proffer, offer, from of- (from ob- to, toward, against) + ferre to carry; in other senses, from Old French offrir, from Latin offerre — more at ob- , bear

transitive verb


a. : to present as an act of worship or devotion : sacrifice

to the Catholic church where she would offer a candle or so to his recovery — F.M.Ford

b. : to utter (as a prayer) in devotion — often used with up

offered up prayers of thanksgiving


a. : to present for acceptance or rejection : hold out tender , proffer

offer a bribe

offer a bill to the legislature

offered his hand in marriage

was offered a job

b. : to present in order to meet a requirement

candidates for the degree may offer English as one of their foreign languages


a. : to bring or put forward for action or consideration : propose , suggest

offer an opinion

offer a proposition

offered himself as a candidate for governor

b. : to declare one's readiness or willingness — used with an infinitive object

offered to help me

offered to join in the search


a. : to try or begin to exert

offered stubborn resistance

don't shoot unless they offer violence

b. : undertake , attempt — used with an infinitive object

offered to strike him with his cane

offered to kiss her

a young bruiser … can hardly offer to beat up on an old man — W.L.Gresham

5. : to make available or accessible : supply , afford

summit offers a magnificent panorama

stream offering excellent fishing

the college offers courses in Russian

especially : to place (merchandise) on sale

offers a range of cameras at reasonable prices

6. : to present in performance or exhibition

offer a new comedy

7. : to propose as payment bid

offered me $10 for it

intransitive verb

1. : to present something as an act of worship or devotion : make an offering or sacrifice : sacrifice

in no other country … do people pray and offer as much as they do in Tibet — Heinrich Harrer

2. archaic : to make an attempt — used with at

3. : to come to hand : present itself

buying land whenever opportunity offered

4. : to make a proposal ; especially : to propose marriage

5. Britain : to be or to become available

free choice to get work where work is offering — Sydney (Australia) Bulletin

corn that is offering is quite suitable — Farmer's Weekly (South Africa)


offer , proffer , tender , present , and prefer can mean, in common, to put something before another for acceptance. offer in itself usually implies no more than the common meaning

offer a cigarette

offer a helping hand

offer a solution to a problem

offer to help out in a crisis

offer a good evening's entertainment

proffer , more literary than offer , adds, or throws stress on, the idea of voluntariness, spontaneity, or courtesy on the part of the doer or subject of the verb

proffer one's hand to a lady

proffer hospitality to strangers in trouble

sympathy should be proffered to the bereaved — Alexander MacDonald

tender , a term with a legal currency implying an offering of something according to the terms of the law for approval or acceptance, in general use adds to offer the idea of the modesty, humility, or gentleness of the doer or subject of the verb

tender your resignation

tender your services

tender your friendship

present can carry a strong suggestion of formalness or a ceremoniousness or outward show in the act of offering or can suggest the character of a gift in the thing offered

present a prize to a winning team

presented the Davy-Faraday Laboratory to the Royal Institution — S.F.Mason

the analysis of experimental science presented in this foreword — J.B.Conant

words by which one scholar can present clearly to another the results of an investigation on this complex subject — E.S.McCartney

prefer in the sense of proffer or present is current only in legal use, though it is common in literary works up to the late nineteenth century

the government of which the victim is a subject may justly prefer a claim — Encyc. Americana

has preferred some serious charges — Reginald Bretnor

I don't prefer any claim to being the soul of romance — Charles Dickens

II. noun

( -s )

Etymology: Middle English offre, from Middle French, from Old French, from offrir

1. : an act of offering: as

a. : a presenting for acceptance : proffer

refused all offers of assistance

considering job offers from several firms

specifically : a proposal of marriage

if she was still single it was not for lack of offers

b. : an undertaking upon terms that embodies a promise given in consideration and in exchange for another's stipulated act or forbearance or designated reciprocal promise and that calls for acceptance or rejection by that other — compare contract

2. obsolete : offering

3. : a price named by one proposing to buy : bid

had several good offers for his house


a. : attempt , try

made an offer to catch the ball

b. : an action or movement indicating a purpose or intention of doing something

halfhearted offer of resistance

made an offer of jumping out of the car

5. : a small knob on a deer's antler : a rudimentary tine

- on offer

Webster's New International English Dictionary.      Новый международный словарь английского языка Webster.