Origins of Common Words - Salary

About the history, origins, and definitions of the common word salary.

UNCOMMON STORIES BEHIND COMMON WORDS

Salary - Literally, "salt money." Apparently the Roman soldier was fed, housed, and uniformed, but the salt with which to season his rations he had to provide himself from a daily allowance, salarium, paid him. Its earliest use in English was as a stipend for a priest.

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