Definition of subscription in English:



  • 1An arrangement to receive something, typically a publication, regularly by paying in advance.

    ‘make sure you get a copy every month by taking out a subscription’
    mass noun ‘the newsletter is available only on subscription’
    • ‘The bank will also extend loans to SHCIL account holders for subscription to initial public offerings.’
    • ‘The Theatre Royal opened in 1792, after construction costs were raised by subscription, including a donation by Robert Burns, who also wrote prologues for productions.’
    • ‘Web content multicast by the primary caches is received, filtered for subscription and subsequently pushed into the secondary caches.’
    • ‘Of course, we are dealing with two separate issues: the first is subscription versus donation, and the second is the search for means of smooth, continuous, easy payment rather than payment in chunks.’
    • ‘Or does mere public belabouring sometimes debase the very virtues intended for promotion and inoculate public sentiment against subscription?’
    donation, contribution, offering, gift, present, grant, bestowal, endowment, subsidy, benefaction, handout
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1 An arrangement by which access is granted to an online service.
      • ‘Coming soon: the ability to stream music into multiple rooms via RealNetworks' Rhapsody subscription online music service.’
      • ‘More and more free online resources are being dropped or turned into subscription services; a new front is being opened by the spread of pay-as-you-go services.’
      • ‘I will be linking more frequently to the Journal from now on, because I finally have an online subscription.’
      • ‘A subscription would permit access for a specific network.’
      • ‘All NGO pricing options involve a combination of subscription to Office and online services, or just services.’
      • ‘On-line subscription services, as well as free access to certain pieces of educational materials, are definitely part of our plans.’
      • ‘Unfortunately many of the information databases that you may want to use have access restricted by subscription.’
      • ‘I agree with you, we online users will probably not pay a subscription for access to online information, simply because we don't have to.’
      • ‘Anyway, if you happen to have an online subscription to the Journal, you can click here to read Lippman's story.’
      • ‘Under Napster's subscription, you could access the same tunes without paying anywhere near that.’
      • ‘You can end software piracy pretty quickly by making the software dependent on a service subscription.’
      • ‘Blockbuster today lowering the subscription price for its online rental service by two and a half dollars, to just under $15 per month.’
      • ‘The service costs £14.99 a month and includes all subscription and Net access costs.’
      • ‘These days, subscription prices for Net access are going up.’
      • ‘Your subscription also gets you access to the tech support web pages, which include both a knowledge base and a trouble-ticket submission and tracking interface.’
      • ‘But if you buy a subscription to a download service offering the same music, that's part of the brave new networked world in which Europe has an edge.’
      • ‘But this study, which requires a subscription for full access, doesn't come close to proving that the therapy is bad.’
      • ‘Handing over a pound at the till makes you realise that you're spending money, but if you set up an online account with a subscription service, you may be tempted to buy a few extra tickets every now and then.’
      • ‘In this model, a customer would pay a subscription to a service provider who would in turn pay the mesh network provider in the area involved.’
      • ‘Unfortunately, the prices for an online subscription to most of the journals is just as high as their print version, making it impossible to subscribe to them all.’
    2. 1.2 An advance payment made to receive or participate in something.
      ‘membership is available at an annual subscription of £300’
      • ‘The centre is financed by a grant from the South Eastern Health Board, by the local Lions Club, by local fund-raising and by annual nominal subscriptions from members.’
      • ‘The annual multi channel subscriptions is now due and will be collected from all householders receiving the service over the next few weeks.’
      • ‘All societies, clubs, associations and organisations relying on annual subscriptions find renewal times somewhat fraught.’
      • ‘New membership/programme cards are available at the meeting on payment of subscriptions.’
      • ‘Annual subscriptions are just £2 and there is an illustrated talk at 7.30 pm in the Soroptimists Room on the first Wednesday of each month from October to May.’
      • ‘As the months rolled on, more and more aspiring riders turned up, so to control numbers the Whalley Amateur Dirt-Track Club was formed and members had to pay both annual subscriptions and to ride the track.’
      • ‘Instead people preferred to pay for content via monthly or annual subscriptions, with a spend of around $10 monthly or $48 per year being the norm.’
      • ‘Parents of youths using the club are asked to note this and send in annual subscriptions without delay.’
      • ‘Each person pays an annual subscription and then a percentage premium on the value of the investment but with no levy on returns.’
      • ‘According to the official figures, more than one in 10 of the adult population plays this pesky game at least once a month, while 250,000 are so enthralled that they pay annual subscriptions to a golf club.’
      • ‘Lancashire County Council will now ask for a refund of its annual subscriptions of about £27,000.’
      • ‘Members are reminded that annual subscriptions must be paid at this stage and only the scores of those whose annual subscription is paid up will count.’
      • ‘Irish obstetricians left the MDU in March 2001 because their annual subscriptions rocketed from €86,360 to €500,000.’
      • ‘Members of the Ballyhaunis Christmas Lights committee will be collecting annual subscriptions over the coming weeks.’
      • ‘The annual golf subscriptions are now due, the members are reminded.’
      • ‘That service relies on insurance company payments and subscriptions.’
      • ‘The Celtic Supporters Club has issued a final reminder to members that their annual subscriptions are due now.’
      • ‘When you get the two options for payment subscriptions, you have to pick one of those and then pick ‘Use game card’ out of the checkboxes.’
      • ‘In paying our annual subscriptions we have the land, we have the planning permission, we have money, so build us a club.’
      • ‘There is never a good time to pay bills and annual subscriptions, but some times are worse than others.’
      donation, contribution, offering, gift, present, grant, bestowal, endowment, subsidy, benefaction, handout
      membership fee, dues, annual payment, charge, levy, retainer
      View synonyms
    3. 1.3British mass noun The contribution of money to a fund, project, or cause.
      ‘the school was built by public subscription in 1878’
      • ‘The rest of the middle class went to proprietary schools which were financed by subscription, or to indifferent private schools.’
      • ‘The Pleasant Retreat Academy was chartered in 1813 and like all academies was maintained by tuition payments or by subscription and usually served the most prosperous families.’
      • ‘The Albert Memorial was among many paid for by public subscription.’
      • ‘Both movements were funded by voluntary subscription, although small grants-in-aid were made to voluntary schools after 1833.’
      • ‘The original Nelson's Monument in London was erected in Trafalgar Square by voluntary subscription.’
      • ‘In the 1880s a monument commemorating both soldiers and rebels was erected on the supposed site by public subscription.’
      • ‘Other services might be provided by voluntary bodies, by subscription or by commercial companies: hospitals, schools, piped water.’
      • ‘By 1776 he had composed Welcombe Hills, near Stratford-upon-Avon, a Poem, published by subscription the following year.’
    4. 1.4mass noun A system in which the production of a book is wholly or partly financed by advance orders.
      • ‘In this system, books were issued periodically and by subscription in sections or ‘numbers’, bound in limp paper covers, and sold at modest prices.’
      • ‘Parents don't feel the need for subscription of any books.’
      • ‘The book was sold by subscription and met considerable success.’
      • ‘Several of these he had had printed himself, financed by advance subscription from libraries and members of learned bodies such as the Royal Asiatic Society.’
  • 2formal A signature or short piece of writing at the end of a document.

    ‘he signed the letter and added a subscription’
    signature, initials
    View synonyms
    1. 2.1archaic A signed declaration or agreement.


Late Middle English (in subscription (sense 2)): from Latin subscriptio(n-), from subscribere ‘write below’ (see subscribe).