- Law. an allowance paid to a person by that person’s spouse or former spouse for maintenance, granted by a court upon a legal separation or a divorce or while action is pending.
- supply of the means of living; maintenance.
- law (formerly) an allowance paid under a court order by one spouse to another when they are separated but not divorcedSee also maintenance
1650s, “nourishment,” also “allowance to a wife from a husband’s estate, or in certain cases of separation,” from Latin alimonia “food, support, nourishment, sustenance,” from alere “to nourish” (see old) + -monia suffix signifying action, state, condition (cognate with Greek -men). Derived form palimony coined 1979.