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[pey-uh-buh l] /ˈpeɪ ə bəl/

to be ; due:
a loan payable in 30 days.
capable of being or liable to be paid.
Law. imposing an immediate obligation on the debtor.
an amount, bill, etc., that is to be paid.
payables, the accounts payable of a business:
Payables are now handled by our computer.
(often foll by on) to be paid: payable on the third of each month
that is capable of being paid
capable of being profitable
(of a debt) imposing an obligation on the debtor to pay, esp at once

late 14c., “to be paid,” from pay (v.) + -able or from Old French paiable.


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  • Pay a call

    Also, pay a visit ; pay one’s respects . Make a short visit, especially as a formal courtesy or for business reasons. For example, Bill asked her to pay a call to his ex-mother-in-law , or Each salesman was told to pay a visit to every new doctor in town , or We went to […]

  • Pay a compliment

    Express praise or commendation to someone, as in Meredith wanted to pay Christopher a compliment so she told him she liked his new haircut. This expression uses pay in the sense of “give something that is due.” [ c. 1700 ]

  • Pay-and-display

    adjective 1. denoting a car-parking system in which a motorist buys a permit to park for a specified period from a coin-operated machine and displays the permit on or near the windscreen of his or her car so that it can be seen by a parking attendant

  • Pay-as-you-go

    [pey-uh z-yoo-goh] /ˈpeɪ əz yʊˈgoʊ/ noun 1. the principle or practice of paying for goods and services at the time of purchase, rather than relying on credit. adjective 2. of, relating to, or based on such a principle or practice: a pay-as-you-go budget.

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