tax

Tax \Tax\, n. [F. taxe, fr. taxer to tax, L. taxare to touch, sharply, to feel, handle, to censure, value, estimate, fr. tangere, tactum, to touch. See {Tangent}, and cf. {Task}, {Taste}.] 1. A charge, especially a pecuniary burden which is imposed by authority. Specifically: [1913 Webster] (a) A charge or burden laid upon persons or property for the support of a government. [1913 Webster] A farmer of taxes is, of all creditors, proverbially the most rapacious. --Macaulay. [1913 Webster] (b) Especially, the sum laid upon specific things, as upon polls, lands, houses, income, etc.; as, a land tax; a window tax; a tax on carriages, and the like. Note: Taxes are annual or perpetual, direct or indirect, etc. [1913 Webster] (c) A sum imposed or levied upon the members of a society to defray its expenses. [1913 Webster] 2. A task exacted from one who is under control; a contribution or service, the rendering of which is imposed upon a subject. [1913 Webster] 3. A disagreeable or burdensome duty or charge; as, a heavy tax on time or health. [1913 Webster] 4. Charge; censure. [Obs.] --Clarendon. [1913 Webster] 5. A lesson to be learned; a task. [Obs.] --Johnson. [1913 Webster] {Tax cart}, a spring cart subject to a low tax. [Eng.] [1913 Webster] Syn: Impost; tribute; contribution; duty; toll; rate; assessment; exaction; custom; demand. [1913 Webster]