Wages Wa"ges (w[=a]"j[e^]z), n. plural in termination, but singular in signification. [Plural of wage; cf. F. gages, pl., wages, hire. See {Wage}, n.] 1. A compensation given to a hired person for services; price paid for labor; recompense; hire. See {Wage}, n., 2. [1913 Webster]

The wages of sin is death. --Rom. vi. 23. [1913 Webster]

2. (Economics) The share of the annual product or national dividend which goes as a reward to labor, as distinct from the remuneration received by capital in its various forms. This economic or technical sense of the word wages is broader than the current sense, and includes not only amounts actually paid to laborers, but the remuneration obtained by those who sell the products of their own work, and the wages of superintendence or management, which are earned by skill in directing the work of others. [Webster 1913 Suppl.]

{Wages fund} (Polit. Econ.), the aggregate capital existing at any time in any country, which theoretically is unconditionally destined to be paid out in wages. It was formerly held, by Mill and other political economists, that the average rate of wages in any country at any time depended upon the relation of the wages fund to the number of laborers. This theory has been greatly modified by the discovery of other conditions affecting wages, which it does not take into account. --Encyc. Brit. [1913 Webster]

Syn: See under {Wage}, n. [1913 Webster]

The Collaborative International Dictionary of English. 2000.


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