AskDefine | Define installment

Dictionary Definition



1 a payment of part of a debt; usually paid at regular intervals
2 a part of a broadcast serial [syn: episode, instalment]
3 a part of a published serial [syn: instalment]
4 the act of installing something (as equipment); "the telephone installation took only a few minutes" [syn: installation, installing, instalment]

User Contributed Dictionary


Alternative spellings


  • ĭn-stôlʹmənt, /ɪnˈstɔːlmənt/, /In"stO:lm@nt/

Etymology 1

From install, itself from medieval French installer, from medieval Latin installare, from Latin in- + ML stallum 'stall' (from Germanic stal, cfr. infra)


  1. The act of installing; installation.
    Take oaths from all kings and magistrates at their installment, to do impartial justice by law. Milton.
  2. The seat in which one is placed.
    The several chairs of order, look, you scour; . . . Each fair installment, coat, and several crest With loyal blazon, evermore be blest. Shakespeare.
act of installing; installation
obsolete: seat in which one is placed

Etymology 2

A 1732 alteration of estallment, from Anglo-Norman estaler "fix payments", from O.Fr. estal "fixed position," itself from Old High German stal "stall, standing place."
The sense of "part of a whole produced in advance of the rest" is from 1823.


  1. A portion of a debt, or sum of money, which is divided into portions that are made payable at different times. Payment by installment is payment by parts at different times, the amounts and times (often equal viz. regular, e.g. mensual) being often definitely stipulated.
  2. a part of a broadcast or published serial.
  3. anything that is performed in parts, spread in time
The serial vandal pales when the headmaster says his reluctant confession in installments, dragged out of him during ten interviews, earns him as many weekly bare-bum caning installments, each six of the best and photographed for the next installment of his school paper column "Crime and Punishment"
  • (portion of a debt):
  • (part of a broadcast or published serial): episode, part
portion of debt
part of a serial

Extensive Definition

An instalment or installment in American English usually refers to either:

Synonyms, Antonyms and Related Words

accedence, accession, acquitment, acquittal, acquittance, adjunct, amortization, amortizement, anchorage, article, binder, book, cash, cash payment, chapter, clause, clearance, colonization, column, coming out, component, contingent, coronation, cross section, curtain raiser, debt service, debut, defrayal, defrayment, deposit, detachment, detail, disbursal, discharge, division, dole, doling out, down payment, earnest, earnest money, embarkation, embarkment, enthronement, establishment, fascicle, first appearance, fixation, floating, flotation, foundation, fraction, hire purchase, hire purchase plan, inaugural address, inauguration, induction, initiation, installation, installment plan, instatement, interest payment, introduction, investiture, item, launching, liquidation, livraison, lodgment, maiden speech, monthly payments, mooring, never-never, opener, paragraph, parcel, part, particular, passage, paying, paying off, paying out, paying up, payment, payment in kind, payoff, peopling, percentage, phrase, placement, plantation, population, portion, preliminary, prepayment, quadrant, quarter, quarterly payments, quittance, quota, random sample, regular payments, remainder, remittance, retirement, sample, sampling, satisfaction, section, sector, segment, serial, settlement, settling, share, sinking-fund payment, spot cash, subdivision, subgroup, subspecies, taking office, unveiling, verse, volume, weekly payments
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