I. noun 1. the amount of something that is permitted, especially within a set of regulations or for a specified purpose • your baggage allowance.
(Brit.) an amount of money that can be earned or received free of tax
• a personal allowance.
[Horse Racing] a deduction in the weight that a horse is required to carry in a race.
4. a sum of money paid regularly to a person to meet needs or expenses • the elderly receive a heating allowance every winter.
(chiefly N. Amer.) a small amount of money given regularly to a child by its parents.
6. [ mass noun] —
• the allowance of slavery in the South.
II. verb — [with obj.] 1.
‹archaic› give (someone) a sum of money as an allowance.
• I have made up my mind to allowance him.
III. phrases make allowance(s) for a. take into consideration when planning something. • the council has made no allowances for inflation.
b. treat leniently on account of mitigating circumstances. • she liked them and made allowances for their faults.
– origin late Middle English: from Old French alouance, from alouer (see allow).