from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition
- n. An economic system in which the means of production and distribution are privately or corporately owned and development is proportionate to the accumulation and reinvestment of profits gained in a free market.
from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License
- n. a socio-economic system based on private property rights, including the private ownership of resources or capital, with economic decisions made largely through the operation of a market unregulated by the state.
- n. a socio-economic system based on the abstraction of resources into the form of privately-owned capital, with economic decisions made largely through the operation of a market unregulated by the state.
- n. a specific variation or implementation of either such socio-economic system.
from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English
- n. An economic system based on predominantly private (individual or corporate) investment in and ownership of the means of production, distribution, and exchange of goods and wealth; contrasted with
socialismor especially communism, in which the state has the predominant role in the economy.
from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
- n. The state of having capital or property; possession of capital.
- n. The concentration or massing of capital in the hands of a few; also, the power or influence of large or combined capital.
from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.
- n. an economic system based on private ownership of capital
From French capitalisme ("the condition of one who is rich"). First used in English by novelist William Thackeray in 1854. (Wiktionary)