n. pl. e·con·o·mies
a. Careful, thrifty management of resources, such as money, materials, or labor: learned to practice economy in making out the household budget.
b. An example or result of such management; a saving.
a. The system or range of economic activity in a country, region, or community: Effects of inflation were felt at every level of the economy.
b. A specific type of economic system: an industrial economy; a planned economy.
3. An orderly, functional arrangement of parts; an organized system: "the sense that there is a moral economy in the world, that good is rewarded and evil is punished" (George F. Will).
4. Efficient, sparing, or conservative use: wrote with an economy of language.
5. The least expensive class of accommodations, especially on a commercial conveyance, such as an airplane.
6. Theology The method of God's government of and activity within the world.
Economical or inexpensive to buy or use: an economy car; an economy motel.
The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition copyright ©2020 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
Indo-European & Semitic Roots Appendices
Thousands of entries in the dictionary include etymologies that trace their origins back to reconstructed proto-languages. You can obtain more information about these forms in our online appendices:
The Indo-European appendix covers nearly half of the Indo-European roots that have left their mark on English words. A more complete treatment of Indo-European roots and the English words derived from them is available in our Dictionary of Indo-European Roots.