—n. 1. the act of allowing.
2. an amount or share allotted or granted.
3. a sum of money allotted or granted for a particular purpose, as for expenses: Her allowance for the business trip was $200. 4. a sum of money allotted or granted to a person on a regular basis, as for personal or general living expenses: The art student lived on an allowance of $300 a month. When I was in first grade, my parents gave me an allowance of 50 cents a week. 5. an addition or deduction based on an extenuating or qualifying circumstance: an allowance for profit; an allowance for depreciation. 6. acknowledgment; concession: the allowance of a claim. 7. sanction; tolerance: the allowance of slavery. 8. Mach.a prescribed difference in dimensions of two closely fitting mating parts with regard to minimum clearance or maximum interference. Cf. tolerance (def. 6a).
9. Coining.tolerance (def. 7).
10. make allowance or allowances (for), a. to take mitigating factors or circumstances into consideration.
b. to pardon; excuse.
c. to reserve time, money, etc.; allow for: Make allowance for souvenirs on the return trip.
—v.t. 1. to place on a fixed allowance, as of food or drink.
2. to allocate (supplies, rations, etc.) in fixed or regular amounts.